Make time for 1-on-1 conversations. An algorithm can metabolize a million bits of data in the blink of an eye, but an algorithm cannot look you in the eye and ask sincerely, “How are you feeling?”
This is a but of a "back to basics" playbook but with a whole hell of a lot more intention. When we commoditize interactions, we devalue them. By using this playbook to facilitate a conversation, we are letting our people know that we want to really check in.
Many remote teams find that even for all the good that comes with it, remote work can obscure some of the soft interactions that teams traditionally relied on for these sorts of cues.
If you’re new to one on ones, we’re going to keep this as simple as possible. The most important meeting is the one you have. If you go into these meetings with too much complexity, you won’t end up doing them. That’s why we recommend keeping the meeting simple by following the structure below:
1. The employee's update
If you’re a manager, typically these meetings start off by asking “how’s everything going?” In the first fifteen minutes, ask questions that dig deeper into how they are feeling about their work, their teammates, and whatever else they’d like to talk about.
In this section, you can uncover what motivates each employee. Make sure to take notes as this will help you craft an employee experience that maximizes everyone’s strengths.
Pro-tip: ask for an 1-1 agenda beforehand. It will help the meeting go much more smoothly.
2. The manager's update
Successful one on ones are not a 1-way conversation, but instead is a dialogue. It’s common for issues to pop-up, and it’s important that you provide context and help them understand why a certain decision was made.
Please note, this is a proposed format, but the important thing is that it’s a conversation where both parties feel like they can be open and honest.
3. Next steps
In the final five minutes, agree on next steps (if needed). As a manager, this is why taking notes is so important. If an associate brings up an issue or suggestion for improvement, take it to heart and do everything you can in your power to fix it. Also make sure to communicate progress along the way.
If an employee shows vulnerability and brings up an issue that may be tough for them to discuss, it’s your job to do something about it. Make sure you follow through afterwards.
The key to a successful one on one is by asking questions (and follow-up questions). We’ve compiled a list of sample questions you can ask below:
Not sure if this is the right Playbook for your team? With LEON, our algorithm recommends exactly the right Playbook, at the right time, to the right team, to be more effective and drive well-being and performance.
These Playbooks range from adjusting workload and schedules, to exercises for improving team grit and alignment, and everything in between.
No matter how your team is scoring, we’ll provide data-driven recommendations to support their most pressing needs.