How to Conduct Quick Check-ins Efficiently

by Srikant Chellappa Jul 31,2020
Engagedly
PODCAST

The People Strategy Leaders Podcast

with Srikant Chellappa, CEO

In the present era, we all know what the scenario is like. People are working from home throughout the globe. So it’s now more than ever that employees need to remain engaged and motivated. Frequent feedback, recognition and effective communication are some of the major components of employee engagement, but it can be tough to strike the right balance.

By balance we mean, making sure the check-ins are neither too less, nor too frequent. Sometimes having frequent check-ins might seem like a waste of everyone’s time because of lack of sufficient room for progress since the previous meetings. You also have to be mindful of not letting too much time pass between check-ins, because you’ll miss the opportunity for time-sensitive discussions, feedback and face-to-face recognition. If an activity has happened in January, the recognition or feedback should not wait till March.

Getting it tailored exactly right for your team and workflows, is a bit of an art and a science. So here are several best practices that you can follow, in order to help maximize your time and effectiveness, by keeping your check-ins efficient and productive.

Also read: A Guide To Manage Your Remote Employees

State the purpose clearly

There is no point of a check-in if it does not have an objective. Managers and employees should be on the same page about the purpose of the meeting. Is it a status update or a progress review towards goals? Is it to give feedback and recognition on a recurring task? Is it to discuss timely challenges and roadblocks? Ensuring that you’re aligned will keep the overall meeting on track and make clear delineation between what should be raised and what should be held for another forum.

Set a frequency

Being the manager, you need to make it a point to hold check-ins often. When it’s not clear when or how often the meetings will be held, it can create pressure to jam too many topics and discussion points into one session. Establishing a cadence for the meetings will prevent this. Employees won’t feel rushed to give, for example, updates earlier than needed if they know that there’ll be a more timely chance to do so. Engagedly’s software makes this easy with automatic reminders through scheduled email alerts.

Have an agenda

Before setting up check-ins, it’s important to have a set agenda. All participants should know, in advance of the meeting and what they’ll be discussing. This will help them prepare the most relevant materials, content, or questions and allow them to avoid spending time thinking on the spot, or forgetting what they needed to say and having to follow-up.

Note the minutes of the meeting

Keeping a note of the points that are being discussed in the meeting, can have two fold benefits. By keeping a track-record of key actions and insights that come from meetings, you’ll save time re-discussing the same decisions or challenges over and over again. You won’t have to wonder what you talked about “last time” because it’ll be clearly documented, and you can avoid follow-up clarification questions on what was discussed and decided. Second, you will be more focussed and that will help you retain the information better.

Recap the minutes before closing

At the end of the meeting, it can be helpful to quickly summarize the key takeaways any action items, and confirm the shared agreement. If there was a misunderstanding or mistake, it’s optimal to clarify it face-to-face, instead of after you’ve already documented and published the meeting minutes.

Also read: Wondering How to Set OKRs For the Engineering Team?

At the end of the day, check-ins can be an excellent chance to connect with your employees on a 1:1 basis, build a deeper relationship and make significant progress on goals. Take full advantage of the opportunity by crafting them for maximum engagement and effectiveness.


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The Coronavirus has affected the way we work today and for months to come. Unprecedented events require unprecedented measures. We at Engagedly believe it is our responsibility as socially conscious corporate citizens to help equip organisations with additional tools and resources during this time of crisis.


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Author
Srikant Chellappa
CEO & Co-Founder of Engagedly

Srikant Chellappa is the Co-Founder and CEO at Engagedly and is a passionate entrepreneur and people leader. He is an author, producer/director of 6 feature films, a music album with his band Manchester Underground, and is the host of The People Strategy Leaders Podcast. He is currently working on his next book, Ikigai at the Workplace, which is slated for release in the fall of 2024.

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