Three Simple Steps to Leading, Pt 1

Several years ago I read Ken Blanchard’s classic The One Minute Manager.  When I turned the last page I said to myself, “I want to be the One Minute Manager.”  While I’m still far from it, I strive to be that kind of intentional and relational leader.  What struck me about the book was the simplicity of the three steps in his leadership system. 

STEP 1 One Minute Goal Setting

Goals are essential because they provide the solid platform from which to manage individuals.
Here are a few keys to one minute goal setting…

  • Have each direct report write no more than 5 goals in 250 words or less.  By using 250 words an employee can be specific enough to explain the results they hope to accomplish in a specified time period. 
  • Meet with the direct report and have them share their goals with you.  Once the goals are written the leader then meets with the employee to discuss the goals to seek agreement.  Make necessary changes.  Talking through the goals  in advance allows the leader and the employee to have shared expectations.  When the leader and the employee don’t have shared expectations they will have shared frustrations.
  • Encourage the direct report to place their goals somewhere they will see them every day.
  • Talk about the goals with your direct report on a regular basis.  Don’t wait until performance review time.  I’ve found that most people’s goals change throughout a 4-6 month period of time and sometimes need to be adjusted.  Therefore meeting regularly with an employee to discuss goal progress allows a leader to be flexible and help adjust goals as necessary.
  • Focus on helping people succeed.  When a leader knows his direct reports goals he then can give them the resources, encouragement and help they need to succeed.

Have you established clear and specific performance goals with your direct reports?

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