Hi. I am interested in hearing what others do with regards to note-taking from their one on ones. I utilise my own version of the manager tools notes word document template and take copious notes. I then take a photo of my notes after the meeting with my iphone and send this as an attachment to my direct with everything I wrote down. Is this an ok method? Do others have better ays of doing this? Would something like a Livescribe pen maybe be a good option? Do others share their notes at all?

Association_Manager's picture

I might not have listened to the right cast yet, but is sharing your notes something that most people do? I make notes during one on ones, but they would usually have limited utility for the direct--it's action items for myself, or a reminder to check on something, etc. My directs all take notes, too, and I assume that they're capturing anything important to them. If we go into detail on a long-term plan or something like that I might type up the action items after the meeting and send an email to them, or ask them to send me an email. 

I can see situations in which sharing the actual notes might be helpful, just haven't come across one like that yet...

If you do want to share, honestly, I would find a photo of notes pretty annoying. I can't copy and paste from it to capture to dos, notes to expand on, etc. 


dawn_coomer's picture
Training Badge

Great job for having the 1:1s. When run using MT guidance, they are effective, right? The notes you take, as a manager, are for you, not your direct. In fact, the 1:1 meeting is the direct's meeting and providing your notes post-meeting takes away that ownership. Think of it this way: do you distribute meeting notes for meetings that aren't yours? Likely not. Directs can take their own notes - or not - it's a 1:1, and the purpose is to build a relationship by listening to what is important to your direct. Managers should take notes to prompt their memory of what's important to the direct so you can follow-up with answers, reminders, more questions, etc. I have to write down personal details or else I won't remember, won't follow-up, showing a lack of concern for what's important to my direct - very bad.

SuzanneB's picture

I don't share my O3 notes.  Not because they are "private" but because they are mine. My thoughts on the paper would not necessarily make sense to my employee. AND I want my employees to get in the habit of taking their own notes.  My guess is that they are relying on you to take the notes and then they don't have to.  And in my experience, when people don't write something down they are less likely to actually do it. 

katehorstman's picture
Admin Role Badge

You Don’t Have to Share

We don’t have a rule that you share your notes. Sending them the notes seems like a unnecessary step. Our guidance is that you have your notes in your office for your team to view at any time. Often, managers keep their notes in manila folders so that the are accessible to their directs. This method allows for review if needed. One on ones notes are for you. You might be noting things that your direct already knows and doesn’t need copies of- for instance their children’s names.

I’m not sure what purpose sending the notes to your direct is serving, but I would suggest having them take notes as well. That would allow for them to note things they need to know, without causing you extra work. If they are concerned about the contents of your notes, they can access their file at any time.


I hope this helps!