Our top 5 tips for a great one-to-one

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One-to-ones are crucial when it comes to effectively managing your people and understanding their goals, aspirations and drivers.  It’s also about building a relationship on a human level that brings out the best in everyone, supporting each member of your team to reach their potential.

Here are our 5 top tips to get you off to a flying start:

1. Schedule

Having regular sessions is really important; building a consistent dialogue will help you to keep on top of the conversation and create a natural flow. This also means you can tackle any issues as they happen, rather than letting things build up to the point that they cause problems.


2. Timing

Some people shy away from booking their one-to-ones because it feels like another thing on the to do list and there just isn’t enough time! The length of the session isn’t set in stone – in fact if you’re talking about the right things, you can have an effective conversation in as little as 10 minutes.  Just touching on one Blend element or checking in on objectives and actions can be just the motivation and support needed to help your talent keep progressing.

In addition to this, we recommend booking in one longer session of around 60 minutes on at least a quarterly basis to make sure you have time to have a more indepth conversation.


3. Personalise

Due to the nature of the conversation, it is key that the meeting takes place in a private space. This ensures that talent feel more confident about opening up and having an honest dialogue. Many people like to step outside of the office environment as well to allow them to shift mindset and focus. Ideally a Blend session happens face to face. If you manage a remote team then we would recommend video communication so that you both feel it is a more human experience.


4. Ask and listen

Asking the right kind of questions will ensure it doesn’t feel like an interrogation. The Blend tool will help guide you by offering example questions you might use for certain Blend elements and themes. Keep in mind the GROW model to help you support your talent to think about what they are trying to achieve and what options they have to keep moving forward.

Once you have asked your questions, really listen to the responses.  Don’t be afraid to ask clarifying questions to make sure you really understand, and playback what you’ve heard.

Another important aspect of listening is hearing what isn’t being said. Be aware of gestures, facial expressions, and posture. If you are able to read these signs as well as pay attention to your own body language, you can get so much more from meetings.


5. Next steps

At the end of the one-to-one, review the key points that were discussed in the session and agree action points for both of you to help move things forward.


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Liz HaywardComment