I've recently started one-on-ones with my employees (interns, actually). I really enjoy them, and several of the interns are openly enthusiastic about them, too.

I want to give them recommendations for how they can make the most of the one-on-ones. What should I recommend? Here's what I'm thinking so far:

  • Bring a notepad and pen; take notes on my and their deliverables
  • Make notes throughout the week about things they want to talk to me about or ask me about
  • Share their concerns and recommendations for improvements
  • Think in advance about what sorts of skills and experiences they want to be getting out of the internship.

What else do you recommend?

Smacquarrie's picture

Talk to them about your expectations an what you hope to get/give during these. Let them know that to begin with that the O3's are non-confrontational. Put them at ease. If you need to escalate issues during these it will become apparent over time.

nicholasbarry's picture

Thanks, Mac, but I'm wondering how THEY can prepare. What can they do to get the most out of the time? 

nicholasbarry's picture

Here's what I've posted on our internal wiki:

How to get the most out of your one-on-one

These are recommendations for making the most of your one-on-one time with Nick. These are not requirements; they're just recommendations (though some, like bringing a notepad to record your deliverables, are pretty good recommendations).

  • Bring a notepad and pen so you can write down your deliverables, and other notes to yourself
  • Set a weekly/biweekly reminder on your Outlook calendar so you'll get reminded 15 minutes beforehand about our one-on-one. That's a good time to think about whatever you'll want to talk to me about.
  • Take notes during the week about things you'd like to talk about. Set aside a page in your notepad and title it "To discuss during one-on-ones", and whenever you think of something you'd like to talk about during the one-on-one, write it down there. Bring things like that up during the one-on-one, especially during the first section for your agenda.
  • Go over your last week's work - the status of projects, any particularly tricky core tasks
  • Think about the future: things you'd like to work on in the future, skills you'd like to learn, skills you'd like help with, etc. Bring those up to Nick.

cunningham12's picture
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 I always think of the first 15 minutes as a chance to run a mini meeting. The direct should have an agenda, objective and clear focus then drive the first 15 minutes to a successful conclusion. In this way they are improving management, communication and meeting skills as well as getting more value from the one on one face time.