How to Do One-on-One Meetings

Leaders are often great solo achievers. But to be a truly great leader, you need to lead a great team. We’ve noticed that some leaders give too little attention to team members. Others smother them with communication and requests for updates. It’s challenging to find the right level of interaction to keep a team on track.

Based on decades of team leadership, we’ve developed a communication rhythm that guarantees your team members are well motivated, well-resourced, and highly productive. 

Using this structure for personal contact, you’ll move from responding to problems to resourcing your team for success. And your own band width will increase as your team becomes more engaged and independent than ever before. 

Here’s what’s ahead in this episode. 

  • Two extremes leaders may default to when leading teams. [2:11]
  • The consequence of either micromanaging or abdicating leadership. [3:01]
  • Why leading teams is such a challenge for many leaders. [5:56]
  • The most common mistakes in conducting one-on-one meetings. [7:50]
  • How often and how long to meet with your direct reports.  [10:28]
  • Four questions you should ask your direct reports each week. [10:42]
  • How to gauge your team members’ margin and capacity. [12:22]
  • Pitfalls you need to avoid when conducting one-on-one meetings. [13:41]
  • How we learned (the hard way!) not to cancel team meetings. [14:16]
  • How to guide your team to solving their own problems. [15:48]
  • Why you need an agenda for one-on-ones, and what happens when you go off script. [17:16]
  • What makes a quarterly one-on-one different from a weekly meeting. [18:30]
  • Why direct reports need to prepare for quarterly one-on-ones, and how to do that.  [20:08]
  • Five questions to ask during a quarterly one-on-one. [21:08]
  • The question guaranteed to provoke self-assessment in your team members. [21:37]
  • A simple question that will uncover blind spots in your leadership. [27:46]
  • How to respond when a team member shares something critical with you. [31:04]

Now that you’ve got a good rhythm for meeting with your team members, here’s your next step. Determine the one-on-one rhythm that works for you, and schedule it with your team members. Remember, what gets calendared gets done!

Who Needs This?

Do you know someone who could benefit from this episode? Why not help them out with a link. Text this episode to a leader who could use help in structuring one-on-ones. Or better yet, drop it into your favorite social channel with the hashtag #leadtowin. 

We count on you to spread the word about the podcast, so thanks for helping us get it in front of other leaders. 

And if you’re not already following us on Instagram, click on these links to get connected. We love reading your comments about the podcast! That’s @michaelhyatt and @meganhyattmiller on Instagram.