Sometimes we get too involved in our employees´ work because we care so darn much. Of course our motivations aren´t always that altruistic. Some of us simply cannot trust others to do things as well as we can. Are you "uh humming" or nodding your head in agreement? Don´t worry; I won´t blow your cover, but if this is something that resonates for you, then why not consider doing something about it? It´s not easy for people to develop their skills and improve their attitudes if someone is constantly breathing down their neck or watching over their shoulders. Sometimes, even when you know in your heart of hearts that someone will make a mistake if you don´t intervene, you simply need to let that person fail. Clearly, if the stakes are high, this might not be the time to look the other way. On the other hand, if you don´t give people the room to succeed or fail, they´ll never have the confidence to reach and grow.
It´s not absolutely necessary to put your imprimatur on every memo, project, or product that´s created within the confines of your company. Spending too much time on the placement of commas, for instance, could mean that you´re going over the line and need to step back. Whenever people feel undermined it´s not unusual for morale to suffer. "Why bother?" some may ask when given a task that they know will be micromanaged-changed a million times, held up in a public display of how not to do something, or in any number of comeuppances.
In some cases, it´s not even what you do but how you do it when it comes to interfering in someone´s work. Certainly, if your input is necessary to ensure the success of a particular task, then clearly you need to be involved. If that´s the case, then you should let people know that you´ll be getting involved. You might even joke about your over-involvement just to keep everything light. Generally speaking, people understand that bosses are supposed to be involved. But being involved doesn´t necessarily mean that you must interfere.
One of the biggest problems, but one that´s easy to solve, is what your staff may not know. That is, you might have an agenda that you haven´t shared. Maybe there´s a prospective client that´s planning to drop in to see how a project is going. If you keep that a secret, then people may not understand why you´re flying from one person´s desk to the other to make sure everything is going okay on the day your visitor is scheduled to arrive. If you can share what´s going on, you might discover that your staff is more understanding than you give them credit for. You don´t have to carry every single stress all of the time.