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Law Firm Management: Stop Micromanaging Your Associates

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There is a big difference between delegating and micromanaging, delegating is efficient and effective while micromanaging is crazy-making. If you’re micromanaging your associates, here are a few tips on how to stop the madness.

Micromanaging
  • Delegate and ghost. If you’re hovering around the work area of associates you’ve delegated a task to, it’s too tempting to begin dictating how they should do their work. So, to solve this problem, you should ghost—leave the room, find another task you can get done.
  • Focus on results not details. To avoid micromanaging how a job gets done, focus on setting your expectations for results. For example, say “That is due tomorrow by the end of the day” or “Make sure that is formatted in this particular way.” This way, you leave the details of how it gets done up to the person you’ve delegated to the task to.
  • Focus on high-level work. Assign yourself only the tasks that can’t be done by anyone else. You need to use strict rules when deciding what that looks like. High-level work tasks are those tasks that must be done by you because no one else can do them. There should  be an objective standard when defining high-level not a subjective judgment on your staff’s ability to do a task.
  • Trust your associates. You need to give your associates the opportunity to prove their worth and competency. Even if you don’t know for sure if someone can complete a task, give them the opportunity to do that task anyway and judge them based on their actions.

The more you’re willing to trust your associates with important tasks, the more they will deliver quality work and make your job easier. Subscribe to the Leopard Blog for discussions on diversity, law firm insights, and other relevant topics.

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