In interviewing dozens of managers, we've found that the best run one-on-ones follow a similar pattern. Between meetings, both the manager & employee collaborate on a shared agenda. The agenda may touch on a wide range of discussion topics, anything from day-to-day challenges to career goals. This agenda drives a weekly discussion that is a critical opportunity for employees to voice issues, communicate roadblocks, and progress updates, and for the manager to gain better visibility and provide guidance. The conversation usually results in actionable next steps. These tend to be clearly written out, time-bound, and assigned to an individual. By following this process, both the manager & employee leave the one-on-one aligned on what work should get done until next time.
To help make these best practices automatic, we're excited to launch a new layout for workspaces. The new layout clearly distinguishes between Discussion Topics and Action Items. The top section is for Discussion Topics, where you can jot down your ideas as you work throughout the week (our Chrome Extension makes it easy to add things on the go). You can @mention collaborators and nest topics to organize them. This provides a way to capture topics while they're top of mind without having to interrupt your collaborator with a DM or email.
Need to flesh out an idea or provide an update? Click the comments icon and add it to the Comments Area. Anyone collaborating on an item will automatically receive email updates when a new comment is added.
Typically, conversation around discussion topics will generate actionable next steps. This is where the Action Items section comes in handy.
For each action item, you can assign an owner, and add a due date to track progress. If you need to prioritize items, use the pin icon to make it stand out.
Finally, the timeline view enables you to filter items that were created or opened in a particular week. This can be extremely helpful if you're trying to review work that was completed in the past.
We hope you like this update! We're always looking for feedback on how we can improve one on one meeting workflows between managers and their direct reports. If you have any feedback, hit us up at firstname.lastname@example.org