Five ways to make the time more valuable.
One-on-one meetings with your direct reports often feel more stressful and disorganized than they need to be. A few simple steps can make them more productive and collaborative: Pay attention. Turn off your phone and email, and focus on the person in front of you. Being distracted or multitasking will make your employee feel disrespected.
Form an authentic connection. Show your employee that you care about her well-being. Ask about family or weekend plans, or share an anecdote from your own weekend. Create positivity. Compliment employee on something he did well, and explain why you value that contribution.
Focus on his strengths. Ask for objectives. What does the employee want to get out of the meeting? Asking her to articulate it will lead to a more productive conversation. Keep it light. Don't be afraid to smile or laugh. Most of us take work far to seriously.