How do I conduct effective one on one meetings?

The upside of well-run meetings with your employees isn’t exactly a secret. When you have a strong connection with your employees, they are often happier and more productive. It’s no stretch of the imagination to say that your one on one check-ins are the main way you can show your employees that you support their development and are here to empower their work. So how can you make those meetings the best they can be?

  1. Put your employee in the driver’s seat
    • Encourage them to proactively set goals and then provide your guidance for how to achieve them.
  2. Be consistent
    • Set (and don’t cancel) your regular one-on-ones. It’s important to have a consistent connection with your employees. 
  3. Make your meetings a safe space
    • Have a special spot. Going to a rarely-used conference room or even getting out of the office will help mentally differentiate this meeting. Then kick it off with some positive feedback to set the mood. Nothing calms people down — and puts them in a more receptive mindset — like hearing about something they did recently that impressed.
  4. Be prepared
    • Just because you aren’t in the driver’s seat doesn’t mean you can come unprepared. Come in with context. Know what your employee has been working on and how it fits into larger organizational priorities. This will help you give meaningful guidance and support your employee.
  5. Put in the work after your meeting
    • Your job isn’t over when the meeting ends. For your employee to continue to put effort into this meeting, they ’re going to need to feel like their words were both heard and that they resulted in actions. Make sure you follow up on action items and help with whatever you can.

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