Why You Should Be Using One-on-One Meetings with Your Employees

One-on-one meetings with employees are an essential part of a functional office. Learn how they keep everyone on the same page and drive profits up.

1-on-1s min read
Employee in a 1-on-1 meeting

Why You Should Be Using One-on-One Meetings with Your Employees

When you’re a manager, the most important role you have is getting the most out of your employees. However, it’s not always easy to know the best way to get maximum productivity. Many managers overlook the importance of one-on-one meetings with staff, thinking that holding meetings with each employee takes up too much time that could otherwise be spent on their work, thus harming overall productivity in the office. This is not actually the case, though. The ideal meeting outcome will see you and your employee both leaving the meeting better positioned to do your work and drive the company onward.

If you’re not currently holding regular one-on-one meetings with your staff members, you may be leaving the opportunity to improve company performance on the table. There are many great reasons that one-on-one meetings should be a part of any team’s regular work experience.

One-on-One Meetings Improve Your Relationship with Employees

As a manager, maintaining strong relationships with your employees is one of your primary responsibilities, which is why the importance of one-on-one meetings with employees cannot be overstated. When you sit down and talk with somebody directly as opposed to in a group setting, it is easier for your natural personalities to come through and for you to form genuine personal connections.

Employees who like their bosses have been found to be more effective, and that should not be surprising. You’ll always be more likely to work hard for somebody you like and respect. Happy employees are also known to be more effective, and liking your manager is one way to enjoy your job more. By having regular meetings with your employees, you make yourself more likable in their eyes and as a result you get the most out of them on a daily basis.

One-on-One Meetings Build Loyalty Between You

One purpose of one-one-one meetings with employees is making them more loyal to you and the company. This goes hand in hand with having stronger personal relationships, as a loyal employee is more productive. When working for a company, particularly a large one with many workers, it can be easy for employees to begin to feel like they are not important to the higher-ranking staff members. Feeling like an anonymous cog in the machine is not good for productivity, so you should always strive to make sure that employees feel valued and seen.

The importance of one-on-one meetings is apparent in such situations. There are few more effective ways to show that you value your employees and appreciate that they are important members of the team than by regularly taking time out of your day to sit down and have a talk with them. When your employees know that they can count on regular face-time with their manager or boss, it helps them to feel settled and respected. It also keeps morale up, because they know that if they have any work concerns they will have the opportunity to address them with you directly in the near future.

One-on-One Meetings Let You Deliver Criticism in a Palatable Manner

The unfortunate reality of working in a managerial role is that sometimes you are going to have to be the bad guy in an employee’s eyes. When employee conduct is not meeting company standards or someoneଁs performance is slipping, it’s necessary to see to it immediately. While nobody ever likes hearing negative statements about themselves, the importance of one-on-one meetings is the opportunity to deliver the criticisms in a personable manner.

When you handle such disciplinary concerns in an email or if you rarely speak with employees directly and they only get you alone when being criticized, that is a recipe for low morale. It can lead your employees to feel victimized and that makes them less receptive to criticism, regardless of merit. Regular one-on-one meetings provide the opportunity to gently correct issues before they have the chance to develop into more serious problems.

One-on-One Meetings Keep Everyone on the Same Page

The larger your staff is, the more difficult it can be to make sure that everybody is working from the same playbook. While group meetings are an excellent way to give the big-picture instructions to team members, they’re not the only way to make sure that everybody knows what they are supposed to be doing.

Holding one-on-one meetings with staff members is an opportunity to sit down with them and discuss what they are working on. Not only is this an opportunity for you to make any adjustments and corrections to their understanding of expectations if needed, it also provides an opportunity for them to tell you about progress.

Having a more thorough understanding of the daily operations of your company is an invaluable resource, and there’s no better way to stay abreast of what is going on around the company than to hear it directly from the people doing the jobs. An ideal meeting outcome will see you leaving a round of one-on-one sessions with a more accurate perception of what every member of the team is up to and how your current goals are progressing.

One-on-One Meetings Improve Workplace Flexibility

The most effective workplaces in the modern working world are those that are most capable of adjusting on the fly. When situations change, it is often necessary to make changes to plans; however, individual employees may feel uncomfortable going out of their way to make proposals without prompting. When you sit down with employees one on one, you have the opportunity to ask about how things are going as well as solicit any suggestions for ways they can do their job more effectively. Often the individuals completing a task will have unique insight, and a personal meeting provides them with the chance to let you know what they think would make their tasks more efficient.

A one-on-one meeting is also an ideal way for you to make a change to an employee’s instructions based on your observations. While sending out an email may be quicker, it is also more prone to misunderstanding. By holding a one-on-one meeting with employees to go over the changes, you can ensure that they know exactly what is being asked of them.

One-on-One Meetings Help New Staff Members Get Acclimated

The importance of one-on-one meetings is amplified even more when it comes to working with new hires at the company. Getting acclimated in a new setting can be overwhelming, and it’s easy for new employees to think they are doing everything they are supposed to without realizing that they are making a simple oversight or missed a bullet in the employee handbook.

One-on-one meetings with these new hires are the perfect opportunity for them to ask any questions they have. It also affords you the chance to give any additional instructions they need that you have observed from their time at the company.

In addition to helping new hires understand their role at the company better, many of the above benefits are also enhanced when meeting with a recently hired staff member. When you’re new to an office it can be challenging, particularly for somebody who is not naturally extroverted. By sitting down and having a person-to-person talk, you ease new employees into the process of joining the team and build a strong bond between you.

One-on-One Meetings Raise Overall Productivity

The primary opposition to holding so many meetings is how much time it can take up, particularly if you oversee a large team with many members. While it is true that every meeting is taking time out of your workday and that of the employee, all the above benefits should demonstrate why this is a false concern. While you may spend less overall time on your other work responsibilities, you and your employee’s ability to perform those activities will be increased by all the positive effects of the one-one-on meetings.

In addition to the productivity benefits that come from improved workplace cohesion and raised morale, meetings can even boost output in a more basic manner. Too much time spent doing the same thing can become monotonous and lower your overall productivity. The time you spend chatting with employees is a break from their normal day, which helps snap them out of a rut so they can perform better after the meeting.

By now the great importance of one-on-one meetings should be apparent to you. When you achieve an ideal meeting outcome with your staff members, you can significantly improve the overall performance of your company and drive up overall profits. If you have experienced staff members, meeting with them every few weeks may be sufficient, provided they are not undertaking any new task that differs from their normal work for you. When you have changed up staff responsibilities, such as taking on a new client, or when you are dealing with a new employee, it’s best to hold more frequent meetings. The purpose of one-on-one meetings with employees is to keep everyone working at their best, so having weekly check-ins when employees are less familiar with their current responsibilities is the best way to facilitate that.