How To Deal With A Hands Off Manager

Overseeing others is never easy, but it’s important for success in your career if you want to achieve anything significant. More experienced people require more supervision than someone with less experience, and this can sometimes feel like a battle at times.

As a manager, you will need to be careful not to get too involved in what other individuals are doing. You have to maintain some level of distance when necessary so that you don’t interfere or risk sabotaging their efforts.

At the same time, though, you need to make sure they're performing their jobs effectively. If you see something isn't working, then you must speak up!

It's impossible to always know how things should be done, which is why there are usually higher levels of leadership around us. Even if you're in a position one rung below the top, you'll still learn valuable lessons about leading and managing.

This article will talk about ways to deal with a hands off manager.

Make sure your work gets done

how to deal with a hands off manager

As a more experienced manager, you may need to take control of others’ workloads or departments. This is not easy for them or you, but it’s important to remember that leadership is about making decisions and getting results.

As a leader, you must be willing to make tough calls and stick up for what you believe in. You will have to manage people who are sometimes reluctant to do their jobs because they don’t feel like their voice is being heard.

But creating an environment where everyone feels engaged and motivated to perform his or her job can only result in better outcomes for the organization.

If a colleague isn’t pulling his or her weight, it’s up to you as a leader to get rid of him or her by giving very clear instructions and then monitoring whether those orders were carried out.

Make sure your results are visible

how to deal with a hands off manager

A less productive manager may be trying to hide their poor performance by avoiding meeting with members of the team, not talking to people about work, or even leaving the workplace entirely.

If you’re familiar with this tactic, try doing something different. Ask them how their day went, if they had any meetings scheduled, ask to meet for lunch or after work so that they can talk more freely.

Make sure you listen intently and don’t interrupt too much unless it is asked of you. But do make some casual conversation as well!

By having informal conversations, you will get a better understanding of what goes on in their personal life which could help you understand why they seem distracted sometimes at work.

It also helps to know when someone is unhappy or stressed out because of work, but beyond their colleagues’ sight, nothing really changes. By being aware, you can avoid making things worse by violating an agreement or asking questions about things that are clearly off limits.

Have a backup plan

how to deal with a hands off manager

A manager that doesn’t care about his employees can be difficult to deal with, especially if you are a hard worker who puts in extra effort. If your boss doesn’t seem invested in what he is doing, it may be time to look for new opportunities.

If you're thinking of quitting your job, do so only after you have made sure everything you need has been arranged for elsewhere. You don't want to leave without having enough money saved up or no good prospects at another position.

Also remember that even though it might feel like there's little hope left for you at your current workplace, people often keep their jobs despite being surrounded by others who work harder than them.

It could be because they don't want to hurt anyone else's feelings, or because they don't trust those around them to pull through for the team as needed, or perhaps because they truly believe someone who isn't performing will not improve.

Whatever the reason, staying put is usually the best choice unless you've got strong reasons to move on.

Make sure there are not too many overdue tasks

how to deal with a hands off manager

A manager that does not take responsibility is a bad leader. If you are the one who was asked to do something, chances are someone else failed to do their job first. This can be difficult to deal with if it happens often because you may feel responsible even when you were not.

It is important to understand your role as a team member and what responsibilities fall onto other people. It is also important to realize that no matter how hard your boss tries to avoid taking accountability, he or she will eventually have to face reality and accept some of the blame.

By having a clear understanding of your jobs and who is accountable for what, you will know how to handle being overlooked. Becoming more aware of your duties will help you focus only on doing your best and leaving the rest up to others.

Try to motivate your manager

how to deal with a hands off manager

The best way to deal with a hands off manager is to try to motivate him/her! If your manager has been giving less and less attention to his or her responsibilities, it may be because he or she feels that you are not supporting them in their job.

If this is the case, then make sure that they know that all of your colleagues look up to them and believe in them. Tell them how much his or her work means to you personally and as a professional, and ask if there is anything that can be done to increase his or her productivity.

Alternatively, you could offer to take on some of his or her duties so that he or she does not have to worry about them. This would also give you a chance to prove yourself and gain more responsibility!

If nothing seems to be working, consider talking to your manager’s superiors about his or her performance.

Ask for help

how to deal with a hands off manager

It’s important to note that even if your manager is not doing his job, it doesn’t mean he or she isn’t trying.

He may be too busy with work, or you might just make him/her tired of helping you by asking lots of questions that don’t get answered properly.

If there are ever times when you feel like giving up, though, ask yourself what would probably help you at this moment? Would talking about your worries help? Might going over the same thing again and again really do something?

Maybe meeting someone else in this situation could offer some tips or advice. You could also try looking into ways to manage your stress more effectively.

Whatever you do, don’t burn out! -- stay well-informed and take care of yourself.

Do not work beyond normal work hours

how to deal with a hands off manager

A few more things you can try if your manager is no longer engaging with his or her colleagues are asking whether they have heard from him/her recently. If so, do not respond until he/she contacts you again unless it is an important matter.

If you feel like your efforts are being ignored then it may be time to look for new employment. While that could be difficult at times, you should consider yourself fortunate as there are many great opportunities out there. Finding another job will help you deal with this situation and make you feel better about yourself.

Focus on the positive

how to deal with a hands off manager

Sometimes, as an employee, you will encounter a manager or supervisor that seems to have left the work place for the day without even looking back. This can be frustrating because they did not come in to work nor do anything with the workplace while at work.

This is especially true if you are working on an important project and they tell you that they are leaving early to go home. It may feel like these people no longer care about the job they lead and that pertains to you too.

If this is happening around you daily then it may be time to look for new opportunities. You deserve better than this!

When someone leaves the workplace empty-handed it can leave a bad taste in your mouth. If this person was your direct boss then it can hurt your self esteem and make you question yourself. You might think “why should I keep putting myself out there when I’m never acknowledged?”

In order to prevent this from happening to you try being more aware of what things you do earn praise for and which ones you must learn to ignore. Also, ask others who work for the same person whether they received similar acknowledgements.

About The Author

Tiara Ogabang
Tiara Joan Ogabang is a talented content writer and marketing expert, currently working for the innovative company With a passion for writing and a keen eye for detail, Tiara has quickly become an integral part of the team, helping to drive engagement and build brand awareness through her creative and engaging content.
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