One to One Employee Check-Ins
Posted on 22nd July 2021 at 16:08
Regardless of where we sit in an organisation we all need regular one to one meetings with our manager. The focus of these should be about our role, the projects we’re working on but also some aspects which are more personal, which helps our manager gain a more holistic insight into who we are and it helps build rapport on both sides. There has never been a better time, or a time more important for effective one to one employee check-in meetings than now.
Our workplaces are transforming at an accelerated pace and a range of new working models are evolving. For many it’s fully virtual working, for others it's a hybrid model and for some it’s fully on-site. In addition, many businesses have been under significant pressure to adopt new ways of working coupled with changing customer and employee expectations, and a critical requirement is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of employees regardless of their work location.
This is a time when those leaders who usually put one to one employee meetings on the long finger, need to now embrace it. It is widely acknowledged that those leaders who conduct regular one to one meetings with their employees really stand out from the crowd as effective leaders, which in turn drives employee satisfaction and stronger performance.
The majority of these one to one meetings can be conducted in an informal setting particularly if they are information sharing in nature: over a cup of coffee on zoom, a walk outside the building (weather permitting), or in a quiet area in the workplace. If you need to give constructive feedback or cover a sensitive topic, then select a place and time that is appropriate to the nature of the discussion.
Many leaders struggle with the duration, format and content of employee one to ones. Our advice will get you started on the path to effective one to one employee meetings. Remember to ask open questions to get the conversation going.
ONE-ONE MEETING TIMELINE
• Every two weeks, or
• Once a month
30 minutes to 60 minute sessions scheduled for at least 6 months in advance.
Selecting the timeline and duration of the meetings will depend on how many direct reports a manager has, and their ability to maintain the meeting schedule.
• Online for remote workers
• While strolling around the grounds of the company
• In a quiet area in the company’s building
• Managers office or a meeting room
It’s worth mixing up the meeting location if possible as it keeps the meetings vibrant. On a sunny day maybe it's a walk outside or a quiet corner of the cafeteria. If a leader needs to deal with a sensitive topic or deliver constructive feedback then choose a location that best suits the discussion content.
10 OPEN QUESTIONS TO ASK AT EMPLOYEE 1-1 DISCUSSIONS
1. Tell me how are things going for you on the project?
2. What actions or decisions do you need me to take?
3. What progress have you made against your goal in relation to project X?
4. What learning & development have you completed?
5. What areas do you want to enhance competencies in?
6. What is blocking you from progressing (your learning) (your work on goal Y or project X)?
7. How are you feeling?
8. How is work/life balance for you at the moment?
9. How are your parents/grandparents?
10. What is the biggest challenge for you right now? How might I help you?
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