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101 Questions to Ask in One on Ones

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That's a lot of questions!

Here are the 2 questions to ask in *every* one on one:

None of the things you talk about in one on ones matter if you don’t follow through and take action on them. These two questions will ensure you always follow through with the important things you discuss in your one on ones:

1) What can I hold you accountable for next time we talk?

2) What can I be accountable to you for the next time we talk?

That's stupid.  There's only 5 questions in doing operational management.

What major and minor milestones, decisions, accomplishments or completions have you done?

How far away are you from finishing your next big milestone?

What new projects, sub-projects, or tasks have you started?

What things are important for you to work on next week?

What things do you think are important, but won't have time to work on next week?

What things are holding you up?

It works wonders. With that information you can solve anything you need operationally.   Strategically?  There's a different set.

Yeah, I like your questions better. 


While those questions are great if you're evaluating performance or checking in on projects, those are not good one on one questions. There's so much you can cover in one on ones that have no other time to discussed. One on ones are a time to fix problems, give and receive feedback, coach and develop your team, and build rapport. This is why that post has so many questions across so many categories.

Thousands of managers have used those questions to improve the quality of their relationships with their team members. This has boosted morale and motivation, as well as helped lower turnover.  You'll have no idea what's on the mind of your team until it's too late with your questions.

If you want more detailed, researched thoughts on why status updates are a waste of one on ones, there's more here:



Jason, thank you for this thoughtful comment. 

The more I think about it the more I agree with you that one on ones should be for:

1. Fixing problems. 

2. Giving and taking feedback.

3. Coaching.

4. Building rapport and teamwork. 

Thanks for the link. I will revisit that page again, I'm sure. 

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