It may sound strange, but not many small and medium companies have the tendency to meet with their team members individually. The weekly/monthly general meetings is enough for them. Or so they think.
Problems in the team dynamics are only solved when they turn too real and can’t be avoided anymore, which tend to be too late. One to one meetings are needed in every company regardless of size. In these more private reunions employer and employee can speak freely for a few minutes about their day to day, goals and workload to see that everything is going according to plan and if there’s any problem the company can identify it and solve it before it’s too late and has already delayed a considerable amount of work or worse, the employee’s motivation has decreased. To pay attention to a problem only when its unavoidable is something no small or medium company can afford.
One to one meetings can double productivity in a company and transform it to be more agile and efficient at solving and staying ahead of any problems with the team.
Think about it, you will end up spending more time solving a deep-rooted problem than having these weekly meetings.
Advice for successful one to one meetings:
- The key is to be honest: If there’s any problem that prevents the employee to be 100% efficient in their work speak about it without fear, be honest and constructive. You have to present the employee a trusting environment so they feel comfortable expressing themselves.
- Prepare in advance: Spend a few minutes preparing the meeting and identify the topics you want to speak about beforehand.
- Actions speak louder: From these meeting employer and employee will find things to improve and tasks to take care of. Make sure you all know what must be done and then do it so in the next meeting you can talk about how it’s coming along.
[EXTRA] Read how to give feedback to your employees to improve their productivity.
What not to do:
- Speak only about work: The goal of these meetings is not to talk about work. Make sure you are aware of everything that’s blocking your employee’s potential and give them room to express themselves. The goal is to encourage a direct channel of communication with the employee.
- Control time: These meeting shouldn’t be too long or too short, prepare a 10-15 minutes window for them and let the conversation guide you.
- Leave empty handed: After these one to one meetings everyone should have homework to do. If not something went wrong and the reunion has been useless.
- Skip meetings: If you are always cancelling your meetings employees will think they aren’t a priority for you. If you want to build an honest and trusting environment you have to commit to your weekly meetings. Scheduling the meeting always on the same day and the same time will help you to avoid any overlap.
- Not ask for feedback: Feedback is the only tool to help you understand your employees frame of mind; what they need, what is preventing them to advance and how to solve all of that.
If your schedule is already packed with lots of tasks for the human resources department, perhaps you need the help of an HR software that will help you automate most of the work. Save up to 6 hours a week and spend more time with your employees!