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Performance ManagementSeptember 15, 2021

Template for 1:1 staff meetings with example questions

Two women with laptop 1:1

1-on-1 meetings are an important forum for communication between managers and team members. They represent an important part of the employee experience, and are essential for the employees' development, well-being, commitment, and engagement.

To support your managers, and to ensure a common procedure in the whole organisation, it’s a good idea to provide your leaders with a template for the 1:1s.

Why are 1:1 meetings important?

Regular 1-on-1 meetings are an opportunity for employees and managers to have a dialogue about the employee’s performance and experience, and to steer it in the desired direction. Scheduled reflective conversations create a platform for safe communication, where both managers and employees can raise important issues.

Regular one-to-one meetings are an important tool in the work to create a good psychosocial work environment. They’re a way to ensure that all employees understand the company's goals in both the short and long term, what is expected of them, and how they can contribute to the organisation's development.

One-on-one meetings give both managers and employees an opportunity to highlight problem areas as well as successes. And a well-functioning structure for regular employee-manager meetings creates an open climate based on communication and transparency. This means problems can be quickly identified and addressed and contributes to a culture where every employee feels seen, heard, and included. Which, in turn, contributes to higher employee engagement, higher productivity, and lower staff turnover.

How often should managers hold one-on-one meetings (1:1s) with their staff?

1:1 meetings are important for both the manager and the employee, and helps develop their relationship. Regular conversations provide an opportunity to reflect on and discuss various issues, both those that are relevant here and now and those that concern a more long-term perspective.

How often it is appropriate to have 1:1 meetings depends on the structure of the team and the business. But a good rule of thumb is that every employee should have time set aside for a conversation with their immediate superior at least once a month. This should be seen as a minimum.

In addition, many companies also schedule performance appraisals or performance reviews once a year. This annual conversation is of a more in-depth nature, with a greater focus on letting the manager and employees develop their thoughts on the work environment and tasks as a whole.

What questions should be included in a one-on-one (1:1) meeting?

1:1 meetings are the perfect forum for setting goals and following up on individual results. They’re also a good opportunity to capture and take advantage of valuable insights and ideas, and to take a step back and together evaluate the daily work.

Examples of 1:1 meeting questions:

  • Is there anything we as a team should start doing?

  • How can we as a team collaborate better?

  • How can I, as a manager, best support you in your work right now?

  • Are there areas in the company you would need to learn more about?

  • Do you get the feedback you need to be able to do a good job?

  • Is there something stressing or burdening you right now, and how can I support you?

  • Where are we on our goals - is there any area that needs extra attention?

A template for 1:1s (staff meetings)

To give everyone in the organisation the opportunity to contribute the best way they can, it is usually beneficial to provide managers with templates for staff meetings and 1:1 meetings.

It is also a good idea to use a common platform for the entire company, to plan and document the one-on-one meeitngs. This way, your managers are supported in their role, and you avoid scenarios where notes from meetings are lost, interpreted differently by the different participants, or managed in different ways by different managers. With clear structures and troutines that everyone can follow, it’s easier to ensure every manager books regular meetings, and follows up on them.

This is an example of what a one-to-one meeting template can look like in Eletive:

1 on 1 template

Eletive's platform makes it easy to:

  • create templates for different types of 1:1 meetings

  • schedule 1:1 meetings

  • document what is said in the meetings

  • Follow up on the discussion with clear goals and action plans – in the same platform

  • automate notifications and reminders via integrations with slack or your calendar of choice

In the platform, there is room for taking notes during the 1:1 meetings, both in the employee’s account and on the manager’s side. There are shared notes and to-dos that both parties have access to, as well as private notes for each individual.

Many companies that today use Eletive previously lacked a standardized process for one-on-one meetings, and for documentation of staff meetings. With Eletive's tool for staff meetings (1on1s), all types of meetings and dialogues can be created, documented, stored and followed-up on in the same user-friendly platform.

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