20 Signs You’re Dealing With A Micromanager


20 Signs You're Dealing With A Micromanager

Founders of startups tend to view the business as their baby. They may be fairly young and not have much experience of people management. There may not be many other senior managers in place who can take some of the pressure off them. And in the early days they may be trying to take on numerous roles. It is not unheard of for the CEO to also be the CFO, CMO, CPO, COO and even the CTO.

But all of the above means that founders can often end up micromanaging their teams. If you’re having to report directly to the founder of a startup you might feel that he doesn’t trust you, which can lead to you feeling frustrated and demotivated.

Here are 20 signs you’re dealing with a micromanager.


Your boss is a bottleneck. Every task you want to complete needs his approval. You find it hard to get things done as he doesn’t have time to sign your work off.


Every piece of work you produce is checked by your boss in great detail. Nothing is ever quite good enough and there is always room for improvement.


Your boss insists on accompanying you to every meeting.



You have to cc or bcc your boss into every email you send.


Your boss is ‘always-on’. You receive emails  and text messages at the weekend or at 3 am. Your boss never seems to sleep.


Your boss completely rewrites your work. That PowerPoint you spent hours on is returned to you looking nothing like the original.


You feel uncomfortable about taking time out of the office for a doctor’s appointment or even to get some fresh air.


Your boss will drop by or call before a meeting to ask whether you are prepared for the meeting.



Your boss frequently changes his mind about what’s important leaving you confused about what you are supposed to be getting on with.


Every process you follow has to be documented and shared with your boss.


Your boss thinks he knows how to do your job better than you. Never mind those 8 years marketing experience you have, your boss insists marketing must be done how he thinks it should be done.


You are stuck in the detail and so is your boss. He doesn’t seem to have a long-term vision or strategy but is more bothered about the day-to-day.


When your boss asks you to do something he spends more time explaining to you how to do the task then it takes you to actually do it.



You have to provide daily, weekly and monthly reports to your boss.


Whenever you deliver something your boss insists on a wash-up meeting to go through every decision and action taken.


You don’t feel you are empowered to take the initiative or come up with your own ideas.



Your boss measures and monitors everything. He is known as a ‘details guy’ or a ‘numbers guy’.



If your boss can’t attend a meeting, it’s cancelled.


Your boss has access to, and regularly monitors your calendar.


You know you are a high-performer but have lost your confidence.

Most micromanagers aren’t aware of what they’re doing. They are proud of their business and want to feel as though they are running a ‘tight ship’. Although they feel that they are giving their employees direction and support, you feel miserable and your productivity and performance is low.

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