The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten
315: How to Do 1-On-1s
Jun 5, 2018
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In today’s episode of The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about 1-1 meetings. They highlight how to set them up, the importance of these meetings, their benefits and how to do them efficiently so that your startup and your team get the maximum benefit.

Your team is the lifeblood of the company so making sure that they are happy, supported and motivated only helps your startup in the long run. The purpose of a 1-1 is to give dedicated time to a member of your team. This meeting is an opportunity to motivate and support your employee, and to find out what they are experiencing while working at the company.

1-1 meetings must frequently be held and should focus on having open communication. These meetings are not performance reviews, project updates or status meetings. But meetings purely focused on active listening to the challenges, the successes or ideas that your employee has.

Tune into this week’s episode of The Startup Chat to hear clear advice about how to get started with 1-1 meetings. Steli and Hiten highlight issues that can come up, and they also share their top tips on things to keep in mind when holding meetings with your team members.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:39 1-1 team meetings defined.

01:32 How often to hold these meetings.

03:35 Ideas for the best approach.

04:55 Questions to ask at your meeting.

06:10 Mistakes for 1-1 meetings.

09:52 Etiquette for 1-1 meetings.

10:05 The power of listening.

10:25 The drawback of responding.

12:02  Avoid problem-solving.

13:30 Treat the 1-1 like an important relationship.

3 Key Points:

The 1-1 is their opportunity to speak, and it's your opportunity to listen.
The skill of listening is very important and not responding to everything you hear.
How can you be as thoughtful as possible?



Steli Efti: Hey everybody. This is Steli Efti.



Hiten Shah: This is Hiten Shah, and it turns out in over 300 episodes we haven't really talked about one-on-ones.



Steli Efti: It's crazy.



Hiten Shah: And how to do them. Yeah, I think that this is going to be very interesting. Yeah, we're going to talk about one-on-ones in The Startup Chat today.



Steli Efti: First of all ...



Hiten Shah: Yeah?



Steli Efti: First of all, what is a one-on-one? Maybe very quick definition.



Hiten Shah: Okay. What is it, Steli? I mean, we're doing a one-on-one right now, right?



Steli Efti: We're doing a one-on-one right now.



Hiten Shah: I'm just kidding. What is a one-on-one?



Steli Efti: A one-on-one is when you take somebody that works with you, usually it's people that you are managing or you're responsible for, and you have a one-on-one conversation with them, usually to talk about their performance, how they're doing, or to hear them out. Challenges they have, problems they have, things they need from you. It's a conversation that's a lot about the relationship between the company and the person, versus a talk about a project or work. A one-on-one is not having a conversation with somebody you're managing about a project you both are working on. It's about the relationship, about people's performance, happiness, fulfillment at work, that kind of stuff.



Hiten Shah: Yep. Great definition. Okay, let's start with an easy one. How often should it be done?



Steli Efti: Such a good question. I don't fucking know.



Hiten Shah: Not an easy one, trust me.



Steli Efti: Yeah. I don't fucking know.


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