Why Monitoring Your Workers Sucks

Bookmark and Share

Says super Micro-Manager Billy on his usual power-trip: "I'm watching you, sucka."

Conventional wisdom says...

You get amazing productivity and results from your workers if you monitor them constantly. Yet, like usual:

Conventional wisdom is wrong.

Managers with Billy's aggressive managerial style demotivate their workers from producing kick-ass results. Instead of empowering workers, they dispirit the heck out of them. It's as if they're treating their workers as working drones, who fulfil robotic orders to satisfy the only one who uses his/her brain: the manager. Don't follow their paths. Monitoring your workers hurts your company in three ways:

  1. You break your their trust.

    People inherently want work. They crave and seek responsibility, and will do whatever it takes to achieve objectives they believe in. When you place roadblocks by monitoring your workers, you break their trust. Instead of empowering them (i.e. "I believe you will kick-ass. Go do it."), you're telling them you don't trust them (i.e. "Unless I will monitor you, you won't get work done."). A working relationship that lacks trust leads to apathetic results.
  2. You drain their productivity.

    Ever worked for an over-demanding boss? It drains your emotional (and physical) energy trying to fulfill his/her every need. The journal Computers in Human Behavior concluded that the effects of monitoring workers hurts their productivity:
    "Researchers gave 134 subjects the standard corporate spiel: quantity and quality are of equal importance. But while each subject carried out data-correction tasks, electronic prompts suggested they were being monitored for quality, quantity, both or neither. As one might suspect, productivity diminished when people believed they were being monitored for quality and vice versa."
  3. You obstruct their creativity.

    Instead of kicking-ass, they're trying to satisfy you. They're doing "just enough" to make you happy -- not more. A relationship that lacks trust, that lacks empowerment, that lacks "I believe you will kick-ass even if I'm not there" quotes, results in mediocre results that "just gets by." It's a reason why you see so many boring products, applications, and services that lack any passion, whatsoever. Instead, we're used to the blah-ness of most things with workers who can't tap their inner motivations.

"Then, what in the world do I do?"

Instead of monitoring your workers, empower them. Believe that they will kick-ass. Give them a clear destination. Then, get the heck out of the way. If you have the right people on your bus, they'll surprise you with what they can do. The thesis:

Empower your workers like the bad-ass mother %@^%!@*& that they are.

And they really are. Word.

If you enjoyed Why Monitoring Your Workers Sucks, get a complimentary subscription to our freshest articles through email or through your feed reader.

Posted on August 25

WTH is Trizle?

Trizle helps you rock ___ with your business.


Get a complimentary subscription to our freshest articles through email or through your feed reader.

Don't Miss Out!

Subscribe to Trizle through email or through your feed reader.