One of the most important types of meeting you’ll come across when you start your new job is 1:1 meetings with your manager. Having productive 1:1 meetings with your manager is crucial to your success; it’s a time set aside for you to speak privately with your manager about your priorities, concerns and professional development. Although this sort of 1:1 will often be framed as an informal conversation, it’s important that you come prepared to meetings like this, and that you’re equipped with the knowledge to make these meetings worthwhile. In this lesson, we’ll run you through all you need to know in order to have effective 1:1 meetings with your manager.
According to research carried out by Gallup, employees who do have regular 1:1 meetings with their managers are 3 times more likely to be engaged.

How to organise a 1:1 with your manager

Most companies should have a clear feedback process in place for their employees, so it’s likely that you’ll be told how these sorts of check-ins will be booked in, and how frequently. Whilst it will vary company to company, it’s common to have weekly, bi-weekly or monthly informal check-ins with your manager. Most companies will also have more formalised semi-annual and annual performance reviews. It is in these more formalised reviews that you might expect to be informed about matters such as a promotion and a salary review or raise.

If you start your new job, however, and there is no mention of feedback sessions or check-ins with your manager, remember that it’s absolutely reasonable, and in fact encouraged, to ask your manager to set aside some time for you. Having regular check-ins with your manager is so important, particularly if you feel disconnected from them. They are an opportunity for you to address concerns you might have and to build a rapport with your manager, which will help strengthen your working relationship with them. In an ideal world, you’d have a manager who will always find time for you and prioritise your development. In reality, however, you might have a manager who is managing several different people and isn’t making time for you. Just know that you don’t need to put up with that; requesting that they set aside time for you is a great example of upward management. Not only will this make your life easier, but it will also show your manager that you can use your initiative and take action.

  1. What is upward management?
    Managing up refers to doing what you can to make your manager’s job easier. If you manage upwards you are essentially managing your manager.

When requesting a 1:1 with your manager, just remember to keep the tone positive and stress why it’s beneficial to them. Answer: Because it will make their life easier if you become a better performing employee. Here’s an example of how you can phrase your request:

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