Start with an open-ended question. What has got you excited at work?
How is _____ going? Discuss long-term initiatives.
Tell me about some recent successes? (AND/OR) What projects have we wrapped up successfully recently? Highlight shorter term wins.
What have you learned over the past 1 - 3 months? Highlight learnings.
What is slowing you down, making your job less enjoyable, or preventing you from achieving your career goals? How can we fix that?
Plan to remove specific roadblocks and create action items.
How can we improve our working relationship? What could I (the manager) do better?
Open discussion. What’s been keeping you up at night? What do you want more of?
Wrap up and follow up. When’s our next one-on-one?
A successful relationship between employee and manager requires more than a single one-on-one per month, so you may want to pair this agenda with our weekly one-on-one template.
The reason for two separate agendas is the higher-level focus of the monthly one-on-one. Where a weekly meeting might address more immediate concerns and challenges, the monthly meeting gives both manager and employee a chance to step back from the day-to-day. From that more distant viewpoint, new insights will surface and you can tackle different problems.
This is the mental framework from which we built this meeting agenda. And it’s why this agenda template is built around discussion topics that encourage a broader perspective. Rather than defaulting to a discussion about whatever priority is the most immediate, these questions structure the meeting to be more strategic and growth-oriented.
It’s not just about what we can do today to expedite this or that project. It’s about what we need to start doing today to ensure we’re where we need to be for the manager-employee relationship to be as valuable and productive as it can be.
After all, what’s good for the employee and the manager should be good for the organization. Otherwise, there may be bigger issues.
In the hustle of meeting deadlines, it’s all too easy for both managers and employees to lose sight of opportunities to improve collaboration, productivity, and employee morale. So this monthly one-on-one is truly critical. Couple it with your preferred project management software to make it even more usable and actionable for your organization.