The Easy 1-on-1s method

Easy 1-on-1s guides users through a simple weekly routine, centred around a set of structured discussion notes, to help both managers and team members get the most out of their 1-on-1.

A simple weekly routine...

Each week, follow the four steps - Prepare, Review, Discuss, Assess - to get into the habit of conducting efficient and effective 1-on-1 meetings.
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Team members fill out the Easy 1-on-1s discussion template.
By following the prompts, they will write a brief but insightful summary of previous week, and their plan for the week ahead.
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Team members adjust their discussion notes with any agreed changes to next week's plan.
Finally, they self-assess the quality of this week's 1-on-1.


Managers pre-read the prepared discussion notes.
They will flag the few specific topics they want to dive into during the 1-on-1.


Managers and team members meet, in person or via video conference, and discuss only the flagged topics.
When they are out of topics, they finish early!

...and structured discussion notes

Each step of the above routine involves this brief weekly summary. It consists of a set of headlines - dot points describing the big events of last week, and the plan for next week - and a few extra bits of supporting info.


These are the main discussion points for your 1-on-1.
Preparation Coach helps users write punchy headlines that can replace hours of inefficient status update meetings and ad hoc check-ins.
Example of headlines written as key points for discussion notes


Explain how the metrics moved in the last week, and forecast what you're expecting to happen next week.
Keep the focus tight - include only the precious 3 or 4 metrics that provide useful clues as to whether your efforts are having the desired effect.
Example of metrics included as supporting information in discussion notes


You can't achieve everything on your own.
Raise and address any issues with those you depend upon to do you job well; your direct team, external vendors, or cross-functional colleagues.
Example of dependencies included as supporting information in discussion notes


Provide an update on last week's commitments.
Then set a specific and well-defined plan for the coming week, aligned to your headline priorities.
Example of tasks included as supporting information in discussion notes

What are the benefits of this method?

Save time

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Efficient meetings

Discuss only the few topics that matter.

And discuss them deeply, until issues are fully understood and the path forward is agreed.

By preparing discussion notes and flagging discussion topics in advance, you can stop wasting time talking about things that are already agreed.

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Fewer meetings

Weekly 1-on-1 meetings, when done well, can replace hours of team meetings, progress updates, and ad hoc status checks.

Once you get into the habit of preparing good discussion notes, you may find you can even remove the 1-on-1 discussion from your diary.

Empower your team

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Preparing discussion notes in advance of each week's 1-on-1 gives each employee the freedom to shape their week according to their preferred way of working.

This makes work more enjoyable, and contributes to the culture of ownership and responsibility.

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Provide a psychologically safe space for your team members to share ideas, address challenges, and solicit honest feedback.

A weekly 1-on-1 also systematically provides opportunities for coaching, and to resolve issues causing stress.

Get more done

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Create a culture where people do what they say they will do.

Foster a sense of personal responsibility, without being confrontational, by creating a supportive, non-performative environment where team members can openly discuss progress and challenges.

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Remove barriers

Identify opportunities to remove barriers to progress, by relentlessly focusing on what is critical to you and your team.

Quickly identify issues and take corrective action, make a decision, coordinate resources, or escalate for extra help.

Have some questions?