You’re Not a Control Freak if …

You’re not a control freak if you send back a rare steak when you ordered medium.

#1. You’re not a control freak if you have high standards for yourself and others. But you’re a controlling jerk if you expect more from others than you expect from yourself.

#2. You’re not a control freak if you pay attention to details.

7 ways to pay attention to details without driving everyone crazy:

  1. Set deadlines and ask for reports. Explain why it matters and what you expect.
  2. Give people a chance to live up to your expectation, even if it means they fail.
  3. Respond quickly when people don’t live up to their commitments.
  4. Make room for people to excel after they demonstrate reliability.
  5. Notice where people tend to stumble. Assign work based on strengths and track-record.
  6. Reward people who bring up problems and issues before they get out of hand. Correct those who hide problems.
  7. Escalate your response to patterns of success or failure. Keep giving space as performance trends upward. Intervene more actively when performance trends downward. Think of this as the dance of intervention.

#3. You’re not a control freak if you expect people to perform up to their potential. You’re a bosshole if you nag about past failures.

#4. You’re not a control freak if you bring up awkward issues with kindness and forward-facing curiosity. You’re a jerk-hole if you hold people accountable to fuzzy expectations.

#5. You’re not a control freak if you expect people to correct their own mistakes. Anyone who consistently falls short needs at least one of the following:

  1. A new job.
  2. A new job description.
  3. Training.
  4. A new manager.

#6. You’re not a control freak if you know how to chill out with your team.

#7. You’re not a control freak when responsible failure is a learning experience. You’re a lousy leader when you tolerate patterns of failure.

How would you complete, “You’re not a control freak if …”?