Manage the What, Not the How

Molly Graham makes a key distinction about good management in the post Manage the What, Not the How:

The key to exceptional management is to get great at defining the “what”. As a leader, you need to know how to create alignment, how to clarify what you expect, and how to communicate all of it. 

She goes on to explain that a big mistake she sees some managers make is to focus too much on how work is done. And when you do have to get involved in the “how”, do it through coaching:

When you intervene, you intervene with coaching. You can say, “That email you sent seemed abrupt,” or “You missed these two points that were important.” You can share examples to learn from. You’re giving feedback and then letting them try it again, not jumping in to micromanage.