The importance of 1:1 meetings

The importance of 1:1 meetings

Personally. I have mixed feelings about this kind of meetings. They are usually in the calendar, where you have your time to discuss any kind of topic, which is usually work related, but could be any kind of things you would like to discuss with your manager or team lead.

I think it's a good option for the manager to understand what the employee is going through. Probably they are in a bad personal moment, they are transitioning a divorce, or they have a sick child, or there is another kind of personal problem. That may cause our performance to decrease. Ideally, the employee should raise the hand and ask for help proactively, but some times that's not that easy. If the manager gives them the confidence and the opportunity to open theirselves, the 1:1 meetings is a good resource. Still, that requires a manager who is open to properly listen and be empathetic and human enough to support those situations. If a manager is just a person that listen to that and still pushes him for a deadline, no matter what is going on..., that is completely a waste of time.

In some opportunities, I really enjoyed them and found them very useful. Again, mainly when I was having some hard time in my personal life (I have a 6 years child and during the first years of her that happened quite often). In some other times, I felt I was wasting my time and was wasting my manager's time as well. Those cases where because I didn't have anything to mention, in some others because my manager just was not comprehensive enough (as I've mentioned before).

In summary. I think they are a good resource. I think it should be in the calendar, but as optional for the employee. If he/she feels it's really needed, it should attend. But if he/she thinks it's not something that will be useful, it should just reject the meeting without any kind of reasons/excuses.

There is a good reflexion on this topic in this book: "The manager's path". I highly recommend it.