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All employees have the right to a great manager. Capable leadership is crucial in influencing an employee’s impression of the company and their own work performance. Managers can encourage, inspire, and help a company thrive, but they can also get lost in micromanaging and overbearing behavior that causes team members to consider quitting.

Learning how to become a great manager takes time and experience. However, there are different strategies you can employ to improve your management skills on the spot. One of these strategies is setting up routine, one-on-one meetings with every team member you’re responsible for.

Inspire Your Employees

These one-on-one meetings are meant to help you get to know your team better. Listen to what they have to say. Are they having any problems at work? Any difficulties they cannot overcome? What is their situation at home? Is their work getting in the way of their family time? All of these questions will help an employee feel valued and appreciated. Everyone likes to be heard.

Use your individual meetings to inspire your employees. By dedicating time to understand their unique situations, you will help them become more dedicated to their job. Energize them, share a positive corporate culture, and help them commit to the organization as a whole.

Don’t Focus on Status Updates

Status update meetings should be separate from these weekly personal meetings. Don’t let these potentially career-changing moments devolve into questions about what the employee is working on, whether they completed their tasks, and what they’re going to work on next week. This is not inspirational.

Instead, use the meetings to coach your employees. Set aside some time for each of them – at least 30 minutes – and connect with them on a personal level.

Keep Your Commitment

Even though you have plenty of other tasks, aside from meeting with your team members, do your best not to cancel or reschedule. Keep your commitment to demonstrate how important these meetings are to you and how you appreciate your employees being open and honest with you.

Key Points

If you wish to incorporate this practice into your management routine, there are three essential points you should keep in mind:

  1. Schedule the one-on-one meetings in your work calendar. Software with alerts set in advance will remind you when these are coming so you can prepare for them in advance, if necessary.
  2. Ask useful coaching questions. They should be open-ended, allowing the employee to share their story. “What is happening?,” “Are you having a hard time?,” and “What impact does this have on you and the rest of the team?” are just some of the examples.
  3. Finally, don’t forget to ask for feedback after a few meetings. Just as you want to be happy with your team’s performance, your team should be happy with their management. Ask your team members whether they feel these meetings are worthwhile. If not, ask how they can be improved. Perhaps you’re meeting too frequently or too rarely. Adjust the structure and the schedule of these one-on-one meetings according to the feedback you receive.

Discover the best way to harness your management skills and organize one-on-one meetings, as well as how to consistently connect with your leadership team and predictably turn them into highly engaged employees. Call me for some complimentary advice. Book an appointment at or call me at +1 (604) 943-0800.

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Inscape Consulting Group
Greg Nichvalodoff, BSc. BM (Honors), MBA, PCC, CMC
Office: 604.943.0800
Mobile: 604.831.4734