Make Every Minute Count. Purposeful Ideas to Restructure Your One-On-One Meetings

Scott Peck said, “All human interactions are opportunities to either learn or to teach.” 

Making the most of your one-on-one meetings is more than checking in with your direct reports on their progress — it’s setting a tone to build trust with your team.  

Running a practical, productive meeting requires a commitment to empathy and clear communication to build connections, solve problems, share updates, and provide guidance. 

Structure your next one-on-one meeting with our 30-minute agenda template and leverage these five hacks to give participants an impressionable experience. 

A 30-minute agenda template sample: 

  • Personal check-in (5 minutes): Check in with your teammate! Keep things light and casual and use this as an opportunity to build a rapport. 
  • Ongoing project review (10 minutes): Review any current initiatives in progress and any obstacles, and touch base on any upcoming projects.  
  • Organizational and professional development goals review (10 minutes): Discuss progress toward goals and any personal performance needs, such as training or coaching. 
  • Miscellaneous updates and items (5 minutes): Cover anything you may have missed, like approving upcoming vacation days or requests to review products. 

Five Meeting Hacks to Restructure Your Meeting Style in the New Year 

  1. Agenda preparation. At every meeting’s core, express clear agenda objectives and visible notes, storing them in an easy-to-find space. 
  2. Set expectations. Challenge and inspire participants to stay goal-oriented, open-minded, and on-topic. 
  3. Establish a cadence. Meeting consistency produces an ongoing platform for necessary updates and builds trust and connection with teammates. 
  4. Nurture proactivity. Demonstrate active listening to allow your participant to feel comfortable sharing insights of their own. 
  5. Follow the F5, L5 Rule: The first and last five minutes of every meeting should feel good! Use this time to connect with your employees and provide positive reinforcement. 

Lastly, encourage silencing notifications on both ends to allow for full concentration and focus. 

Develop a human-centered meeting approach to achieve your 2024 professional and organizational team goals. Prepare and adjust along the way so that your sessions brilliantly motivate and build the participation you seek.