6 One on One Questions You Need to Start Asking

happy male tutor giving high five to female student near computer in modern loft cafe

Are you always at a loss for words when you have your one on one?

You know you should have one on one questions ready for your direct reports, but something else might come up that you’re not expecting, or the conversation goes on a tangent.

Being prepared shows your direct reports that you’ve come with a plan. You’re also setting the direction and letting them know where to focus their attention next.

If you don’t already have a structure or one on one questions ready, then try these out.

1. How’s Everything Going?

It seems obvious, but this shows that you’re genuinely interested in the wellbeing of your direct report. It’s just a courtesy to see how they are and how everything’s going in their life. It’s one of the perfect one on one questions to start with and sets the mood for the rest of the conversation.

2. What’s Worrying You?

Understanding what your direct report is concerned about is a way to call out any problems that can impact performance. It also allows you to dispel any myths or rumours that may be floating around the office.

3. What’s One Thing You Want to Accomplish by the End of the Year?

It’s good to understand your direct report’s goals, especially if they’re aligned with yours. It doesn’t even necessarily have to be a business goal that they want to share. Perhaps they want to buy a house. Or maybe they want to reach a health goal. Whatever it may be, this will allow you to see how you can assist them on this journey.

4. What Are Your Biggest Time Wasters?

Understanding what’s getting in the way of your direct reports performing at their best needs to be a regular agenda item. If you can clear their path, then that’s going to be good news for you and your business.

5. What Do You Need From Me?

It’s important to understand how you can help your direct reports. Most of the time, you’ll get the response that they don’t need anything. They want to prove that they can do it on their own without your help. But they need to know that you’re available and are there to help when they need it. So don’t be afraid to probe if you’re not getting the answer you’re after.

6. Are There Any Decisions You’re Stuck On?

Understanding what your direct reports are stuck on can be an opportunity to provide them with some direction. If you offer your opinion on how they should go about a problem, it can help them next time they come across the same issue.

How Effective Are Your One on One Questions?

The one on one questions you ask will determine how your direct report approaches the next week, fortnight, or month. Make the most of this time together and ensure that it’s a step in the right direction so you can continue the momentum and achieve your business goals.

If you need help managing your direct reports, then make sure you’re following the Better Boss Blog. You’ll find tips and advice on how to lead your team. Follow pwf services on LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook, so you never miss a post.

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