Manager's Guide to Your First One-on-One

First time meeting someone you’re managing? Here’s how to set things up for success.

The primary goal of a manager is to support so that everyone on your team can grow in ways that benefit both them and the team. With this, you’ll understand what makes them give and be their best.

Motivating #

  1. What kinds of projects or situations do you find the most invigorating? Something completely new? Fixing something that’s existing?

Demotivating #

This can be a stand-in for what makes them sad, angry, want to throw in the towel.

  1. What do you find demotivating about work?
  2. How will I know when you’re feeling this way?
  3. What could I do to support you in times like that?

Feedback #

  1. How do you prefer to receive feedback? Email, in person?
    • I default to keeping anything constructive about your performance between us.
  2. When do you prefer to receive feedback—routinely in 1:1s, or as-it-happens?
    • I default to telling you how things are in, or close to, the moment.
  3. How do you prefer to receive recognition—publicly or privately?

Goals & Support #

  1. What do you need from your manager? More encouraging or pushing?
  2. Have you set any goals for yourself for the near future?
  3. What do you need from your teammates?
  4. What makes our 1:1s the most valuable for you? 

Adapted from Lara Hogan’s initial one-on-one template.