What is more challenging for you as a manager, talking to a large audience or speaking to an individual in your team about their poor performance?

Many people say it’s the public speaking gig. But a lot of managers avoid that 1:1 conversation.

Do you avoid the 1:1 challenge?

Your 1:1 meetings with team members can be as challenging as any public speaking. For this reason many managers put up with an individual’s poor performance or inappropriate behaviour for weeks or months, rather than confront it.

  • How do you manage the under-performer who is resentful about being passed over for promotion?
  • How do you stretch your top performers?
  • How do you stop them becoming insufferably arrogant or just complacent and lazy?

The solution is conversation

I believe that the solution to all of these lies in an empowering 1:1 conversation. Conversation where you truly listen, using these important skills:

  • Deep non-judgemental listening
  • Careful open questions
  • A mindset that believes they (not you) will come up with good solutions.

Perhaps you shy away from regular 1:1s because you think it will be difficult to manage the situation and the time effectively. Create an agenda and keep it where you can see. Allow 40 minutes or an hour and make sure you have a clock in your line of sight.

Alison Haill is Founder and Managing Director of Oxford Professional Consulting. She has over 30 years’ experience in helping clients narrow the gap between performance and potential, so they create great teams, influence others and transform how they lead within the organisation.

Alison works with multi-nationality teams, and is the author of How to Coach your Team into Superstars. To discuss your context and find out more, contact Alison Haill at alison.haill@opcOxford.com, by phone on 01865 436791 or click here.

More blogs from Alison: Top 10 Tips to Build Trust Faster and Be More Effective When you Work in Multi-Nationality Teams