Organizations across the globe have now realized the importance of a healthy workforce for achieving long-term goals. And the first crucial step for executing this desire is establishing good internal communication with their employees. Though there are many ways to do so, one method that remains undeterred is the one-on-one meeting between a manager and an employee.
If conducted ideally, these one-on-one meetings can yield many opportunities for employers to set the tune with their workforce on the right track.
However, 1:1's are very different from usual team meetings. These meetings usually occur between a manager and an employee, mainly within a closed space where the former's role is crucial.
It is totally up to them to break the ice with the employee and extract meaningful output during their course of face-to-face conversation. All of this depends on what questions you're going to ask your employees. And as a manager, getting confused about what to ask while during 1-1's would be the last thing you could think of?
The most common mistake which managers do-while conducting such meetings is emphasizing more on the employees' performance. This way, they lose the vital opportunity to know them inside out and build trust. Moreover, if the meeting doesn't go well, it may negatively impact the employee regarding your management style.
Managers already have a lot to deal with in their day-to-day work cycle. And thinking of one on one meeting questions shouldn't be a concern on their list.
Related article: 9 Powerful Tips For Conducting Successful One on One Meetings
This is why I have listed down some of the perfect one on one meeting questions along with their types to make things easy for you.
Types of one on one meeting questions with 50 example questions for great managers
- Casual Questions for building the rapport
One-on-one meetings can be awkward if you don't build rapport with your employees right from the very beginning. And starting the session with some casual questions related to their life outside of work can be handy. It'll help both you and the employee set the flow for the rest of the meeting and get on with it.
Some examples of casual one on one meeting questions
- How are you?
- How’s your day going so far?
- How are your parents/children?
- What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you come to the office on Monday?
- How do you spend your Sundays?
- Is there any voluntary cause you’re associated with and working for while off-duty?
- What do you prefer, tea or coffee?
- If you suddenly become a millionaire, what's the first thing you would do after leaving the job?
- What is the one thing that you like about yourself?
- What's your favorite food?
- Questions on their views about the organization’s goal
Until and unless you know what your employees really feel about their workplace, no matter what measures you take, they will always be left incompetent. But one on one meeting allows you to know your employees closely. Asking the perfect questions here would act as the hammer hitting the nails at the right place.
One on one meeting questions for knowing their views
- How do you feel working for our organization?
- Are you aware of how your work is impacting our business?
- How would you describe your organization to friends and family if they ask you?
- According to you, what should we do to achieve our goal as a company?
- What is the one thing that you would probably change in our company if you were in my position?
- Do you have any suggestions that would help in our company’s growth?
- How would you feel or react if you were asked to stay after work hours for important meetings?
- Can you please give any remarks on our work culture?
- Do you think that your superiors communicate their views with you in a good way?
- Will you tell me about your impression of our organization till now?
- Questions related to their career goals
Every employee aspires to learn new things at his or her workplace, gain experience and grow professionally. As such, it is your responsibility to keep them motivated and inspired in the workplace. Asking them such questions would display your supportive nature in front of them. Thus, they will be much more confident about you as their manager and wouldn’t hesitate to speak their mind freely.
Examples of career-related one on one meeting questions
- What is the goal that you want to achieve in our organization?
- What are the things that you learned from your job till now?
- Are you able to apply your knowledge from your past experiences in our organization?
- Are you able to cope up with your current job requirements?
- What skills would you take from our organization to your next job if you ever make up your mind to leave us?
- Do you require further training to sharpen your skills in our organization?
- What motivated you to take up this career path?
- Would you like to go for a career change ever?
- Is there anything that you like to do for your self-development after work?
- What more do you think we can do for boosting your professional growth?
- Questions to gauge their workplace satisfaction levels
It is not a myth anymore of how workplace satisfaction positively affects employee productivity. But finding out if your employees are satisfied is really difficult if you don’t establish a strong communication. However, during one on one meetings since it’s only you and the employee, you get the opportunity to ask them these questions directly.
One on one meeting questions for gauging employee satisfaction
- Do you feel supported in our organization?
- What is the most satisfactory thing about your job?
- How do you feel being a team member of your respective team?
- Would you say if you feel appreciated by your team members regularly? Do you appreciate your team members regularly?
- One of the most important questions I wanted to ask you was if you can enjoy a good work-life balance? Is there anything bothering you from enjoying a good work-life in our organization?
- Does our employee benefits package satisfy your expectations as employee privileges from our organization?
- Are you satisfied with the types of equipment and tools at your disposal?
- How would you define your relationship with your other team members in a word or two?
- Would you recommend your other friends, family, or acquaintances to join our organization?
- Would you like it if I organize these 1 on 1 meetings on regularly?
- Questions for wrapping your 1-on-1 meeting on a positive note
Always wrap up your one on one meetings on a positive note. Remember to appreciate your employees for their time and efforts. Here, you can ask them for their feedback regarding the meeting. Based on this feedback, you can further conduct future 1:1 meetings more efficiently and strengthen your position as a great manager.
Example one on one meeting questions to wrap up on a positive note
- What do you feel about this 1:1 meeting? Did I miss anything that you would like to discuss?
- Would you recommend any of your team members who are doing exceptionally well?
- What’s the best part of your life outside of work?
- Would you like to recommend any other snack for our cafeteria?
- If you become a CEO someday, what is the first thing you would do in your capacity?
- Do you have pets? Would you like to bring them to work?
- What is the biggest surprise that you got in your job here?
- How would you change what other people feel about you?
- Are you a sports lover, or do you have any other hobbies?
- Is there any specific topic which you would like to discuss apart from our meeting agenda?
These were some of the one on one meeting questions that you can ask your employees during a 1:1 meet.
Even though it’s you who will be asking these questions but try to keep up a bilateral communication. One on one meeting is the only stage where you can completely know how your employees feel. Therefore, you should also encourage them to speak up and share their concerns.