Common 1-on-1 Mistakes


1-on-1’s are valuable opportunities for leaders to develop their teams and to surface issues that need to be dealt with. You can create effective 1-on-1s if you avoid these common mistakes:


  1. Conducting 1-on-1s only when there’s a problem. Great managers don’t respond to trouble, they prevent it through regular 1-on-1s.
  2. Setting the agenda. Resist taking charge and instead, invite team members to help create the agenda.
  3. Canceling. Nothing says “I don’t care” like canceling a 1-on-1. While the 1-on-1 may last in a string of meetings, but your direct report may have been waiting a week to get access to you and raise an important concern. Not far behind is being chronically late for the 1-on-1.
  4. Talking too much. Plan to speak about 20% of the time--preferably to ask questions.
  5. Never or rarely giving feedback. Most people want to know how their manager thinks they’re doing. Provide a steady dose of reinforcing and redirecting feedback. 


1-on-1s are all about helping your people develop. Remember, the most effective 1-on-1s are their meetings, not yours.   

Don't let 1-on-1s slip into the ineffective and monotonous territory of simple status reports and progress checks. Get 100+ questions to improve your 1-on-1s and use them to engage your people, uncover issues, and unleash potential. 


About the Author

Kory Kogon

Kory Kogon is FranklinCovey's Vice President of Field Development. Kory's focus is to help strengthen the capacity of the field teams to be highly consultative, while driving revenue and renewal within FranklinCovey's new and exciting subscription model, the All Access Pass. Kory is also one of the authors of the Wall Street Journal bestseller "The 5 Choices: The Path to Extraordinary Productivity", in addition to "Project Management Essentials for the Unofficial Project Manager" and "Presentation Advantage". She has over 25 years of business expertise from front line positions to an executive team member. Prior to FranklinCovey, Kory spent six years as the Executive Vice President of Worldwide Operations for AlphaGraphics, Inc.

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