Blog: The absolute latest random thoughts

Kari Byron news

highlighted links:

What is management?

Random websites, April 2019 edition

Apps I don't use, 2019 version

When did the Fall happen?

The merging of the blogs...

Living in micromanaging

MNBlogCon 2017 musings

Bread and circus

Salvation vs. Kingdom

"In your anger, do not sin"

earlier posts:

09.2002   10.2002   11.2002   12.2002   01.2003   02.2003   03.2003   04.2003   05.2003   06.2003   07.2003   08.2003   09.2003   10.2003   11.2003   12.2003   01.2004   02.2004   03.2004   04.2004   05.2004   06.2004   07.2004   08.2004   09.2004   10.2004   11.2004   12.2004   01.2005   02.2005   03.2005   04.2005   05.2005   06.2005   07.2005   08.2005   09.2005   10.2005   11.2005   12.2005   01.2006   02.2006   03.2006   04.2006   05.2006   06.2006   07.2006   08.2006   09.2006   10.2006   11.2006   12.2006   04.2007   05.2007   06.2007   07.2007   08.2007   12.2007   01.2008   02.2008   05.2008   06.2008   07.2008   08.2008   12.2008   01.2009   02.2009   03.2009   04.2009   05.2009   06.2009   07.2009   09.2009   10.2009   11.2009   12.2009   01.2010   02.2010   03.2010   04.2010   05.2010   06.2010   07.2010   08.2010   09.2010   10.2010   11.2010   12.2010   01.2011   02.2011   03.2011   04.2011   05.2011   06.2011   07.2011   08.2011   09.2011   10.2011   11.2011   12.2011   01.2012   02.2012   03.2012   04.2012   06.2012   07.2012   10.2012   11.2012   12.2012   01.2013   02.2013   03.2013   04.2013   05.2013   07.2013   09.2013   10.2013   11.2013   12.2013   01.2014   03.2014   05.2014   06.2014   07.2014   08.2014   09.2014   10.2014   11.2014   12.2014   01.2015   02.2015   03.2015   04.2015   05.2015   06.2015   07.2015   08.2015   09.2015   10.2015   11.2015   12.2015   01.2016   02.2016   03.2016   04.2016   05.2016   06.2016   07.2016   11.2016   04.2017   05.2017   06.2017   09.2017   10.2017   06.2018   01.2019   04.2019   07.2019  


Living in micromanaging

I don't often give career advice but I do have some in me. And if you have subordinates, you need to read this article:


I know some people don't like the term "subordinates" so let's rephrase it as: "If you have people in your life for whom your actions have a direct (and perhaps debilitating) impact on their income and career..."

Want to go back to the word "subordinates" now? I thought you might.

I've had plenty of managers in my 21 years of full-time employment and working several years part-time before that. Probably shy of half have been textbook micromanagers (the type to read that Fast Company article as a how-to manual) and one of my biggest regrets in life is that I was one, too. Only at times... but a character flaw that only shows up when things are stressful is about as major a character flaw as you can have. What made me fail as a micromanager (yes, there are "successful" ones) was that I couldn't get past the reality of tampering with people's lives and livelihoods. I made a smooth and positive transition, with my soul mostly intact.

I've learned over the years that the micromanaging types are the first to dismiss you with "It's just a job." Truer words were never spoken; when they slot you in as a cog in the machine, they'll give you their orders and they really don't care if you're unhappy, unhealthy, or if you just up and leave.

That gets dangerous on a number of levels.

First, an old truism: "The only thing worse than an employee who quits and leaves is an employee who quits and stays." In the union world you encounter the work-slowdown technique of "working to the rule." If you think you have a lot to micromanage now? Just wait until that happens. People can "obey your commands" without "doing their job," and now you've just handed your HR department a mess.

Worse is the volatile environment that unfolds when you have a micromanager working under a visionary. "In order to accomplish our leader's vision of our product installed in every household so pollution is reduced by 90% by 2020, I need you to have your TPS report on my desk each day by 3:00." If you're an employee who sees that happening around or to you, and if your micromanager isn't going anywhere? Get out. Get out, get out. Or accept that your department/division/unit is going to fail and you'll be leaving on someone else's terms.

From the article: "(R)esist the urge to interfere unless they ask for your help or notice something unethical or dangerous. Done good enough by your team is better than done perfectly (does that even exist?) by you."

My micromanager readers will respond, "I'm not interfering! I 'trust their judgment' and I'm just... correcting them and informing them of my expectations." 'Nuff said.


MNBlogCon 2017 musings

It's both entertaining and embarrassing that I can point to this blog at a blogging convention and note its 2002 start date. It's a mess -- a glorious, fascinating, pathetic, inspiring mess -- of random content over the past 15 years.

So when I confront the "what's my niche" question... I don't have one. And maybe that's what it is. A non-niche. (That's so meta!

I was introduced to the term "lifestyle blogger" at this year's Minnesota Blogger Conference, and the fact that I'd never encountered that term before now probably tells you something about my qualifications as a "blogger." I explained to those around me that my attendance was "aspirational" rather than... I don't know. "Real"? "Functional"? I don't know what the opposite word would be. I know that I'm nothing like the bloggers who were around me, with their focused themes and editorial calendars and monetization plans

Yet I still love to write, and I regret that I don't do it more

My podcast (Ericast.com) has taken over most of my creative expression these days... but even so, it became "the weekly podcast that comes out about once a month.

My random "minor celebrity" site (which will go unnamed here, but you can easily find it if you click around) has much better traffic than this does. Yet it's there merely as an exercise in SEO and an entertaining experiment in how people click on what's popular. Pat On Purpose wrote something really personally convicting:

If somebody were to ask my wife or my hypothetical child about what I do it must be something that they’re both proud of.
I'm not sure I can say that of everything I've put out on the Internet. I'm not sure I can say that of most of the things I've put out on the Internet. It's not that I'm embarrassed by them or think they're immoral. But did they add value to society? No. Did they entertain society? Maybe -- in tiny pockets, at least. Maybe that's enough.

Maybe I should tweak my template and that would make me more motivated to blog... because being pretty counts for something, right?


emlarson.com:   Home | Blog | Work | Tech | Life | Lord | Play | Mail

Entire site contents Copyright © 2000-2005 Eric M. Larson

All rights reserved, please don't steal my stuff, etc. etc. etc.