Are you holding one-on-one meetings with your direct reports? If not, you should be! They are a great way to “check in” and to keep employees on track and engaged. Use one-on-one meetings to:
- Follow up on progress of initiatives and projects to which the employee is assigned
- Work collaboratively with the employee to resolve issues
- Set professional development goals and a plan to work toward them
- Provide both positive and constructive feedback outside of the regular performance review process
- Get to know the employee and their personal and professional goals
Before each one-on-one meeting, collaboratively set the agenda with the employee. Be sure to include follow up items from the last one-on-one meeting. Consider developing action plans with the employee to set a plan for how they will reach goals. (Download an Action Plan Template.) Follow up on progress toward reaching the goal outlined in the action plan during the monthly one-on-ones.
One-on-one meetings are best held face-to-face; but when you have remote employees and travel is just not possible, consider a virtual platform over a phone conversation. With a virtual platform you can still see the person you are talking with – for example, Skype or GoToMeeting – and that enables for a closer connection than just a phone call.
Consider setting up one-on-one meetings at least once a month. However, if you have a new employee, consider bi-weekly one-on-one meetings – this enables for the new employees to get acclimated to the company quicker and likely they need more guidance from the beginning to be comfortable with their new role.
Don’t skip your one-on-one meetings! Do not allow for distractions – shut down your email, let voicemail pick up your phone calls, and close the door so you aren’t disturbed. Nothing is more frustrating for an employee than to feel like you don’t care enough to provide them your undivided attention.