16th January 2014

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by: designers-i

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Categories: Engage for Success Blog

Startups: A Simple Guide to Better Coaching and Feedback in Your Company

Joel Gacoigne, CEO at Buffer emphasises the importance of 121’s for startup companies, he suggests they start to experiment early on as it took them some time to figure out how to structure it. Buffer a successful start up makes your life easier with a smarter way to schedule the great content you find. Fill up your Buffer at one time in the day and Buffer automagically posts them for you through the day. Simply keep that Buffer topped up to have a consistent social media presence all day round, all week long, the business now has over 900,000 users.

He goes onto give advice for startup companies by discussing what has worked well for them, he states explicitly that it took them a while to figure it out and by no means is his model the only one. The structure that has proven to be successful for them is the following:

10 minutes to share and celebrate your Achievements
40 minutes to discuss your current top challenges
10 minutes for the team lead (or me) to share some feedback
10 minutes to give feedback to the team lead (or me)

He states each of these sections serve a slightly different purpose and combine to create a very productive session. In addition, once sessions like this are done consistently over a period of a couple of months, a momentum builds and we’ve found the whole team has really started to move into a whole new gear.

Joel also quotes a Ben Horowitz one on one article ‘Generally, people who think one-on-one meetings are a bad idea have been victims of poorly designed one-on-one meetings. The key to a good one-on-one meeting is the understanding that it is the employee’s meeting rather than the manager’s meeting.’ When you share the structure in advance and 85% of the time is dedicated to the team member, and it is up to them to set the agenda, it suddenly becomes very empowering.

Joel suggests a number of other useful hints in the full article which can be accessed here.

This summary is based on the original article which is not owned by Engage for Success.