The Boss-Employee One-on-One meeting is your communication platform. If you're wondering what to say in one on ones with your boss then this section will show you the best questions to ask during one on one meetings with your manager. The One-on-One meeting is where you can find out what you need to know. Don't leave it up to your boss to tell you what you need to know because bosses are busy, distracted, shy or just plain don't know what they should communicate to you.

Now most employees think that it's the boss who is responsible for One on One Meetings with Employees. But there are two people in this meeting and if you take a passive role and rely on your boss to do everything then you're not going to get your needs met. If you take a more active role in the meeting then you can use this meeting to get what you want from your job. This is what I show you how to do in this free online course: 121s with your Boss. The course includes best practice one on one templates plus managing your boss tips.

These are some good questions to ask during on one meetings. You don't ask these questions every time, pick the questions according to what you don't know and what seems to work best with your boss:

Checking in with Expectations:

  • What am I doing that is working and why? Do you want more of this and how?
  • What am I doing that needs to change? Why and how?
  • What am I doing that I should stop doing?

Growth: Personal Development, Career Progression:

  • What future roles do you see as suitable for my skill-set and career progression?
  • What skills should I develop to do my job better?
  • What skills should I develop to support my career progression?
  • What responsibilities can I take over as part of career development or building my network / experience?
  • Can you please give me X responsibility (because I think I can do a good job at it or it will develop my experience / network)? Some bosses prefer their employees to be proactive. If you want responsibilities ask for them)
  • Can you please support me in learning about X? (via coaching or sponsoring training - see "9 Ways to Get Your Company to Pay for Your Training." If you want training, ask for it specifically and justify why it supports your bosses goals.
  • What do you think my blind spots are that are holding me back?
  • What do you think are my strengths that I should focus on?
  • Are there any people I should develop a better network with and how? Would you introduce us or put us onto a project together?

Aligning Priorities:

  • What is highest priority to you?
  • What are lower priority items and what's the possibility of these being cancelled / postponed indefinitely?
  • Is there anything I need to know about you, the team or the business?


  • Do you need resources like extra time, assistance, tools, training? You won't get unless you ask (but remember to justify it, make it worthwhile to your boss because your boss won't like being asked if your boss does not believe it's necessary)

Being Helpful / Being Awesome:

  • What can I help with?
  • What are you struggling with?
  • What are you trying to achieve?
  • How can I support you with your own boss?

Next Steps:

So those are the best questions to ask in One on Ones with your Boss which will improve your work life. Self Leadership is about taking control of your life to achieve what you want regardless of whether you have a good boss or a bad boss. And managing your boss starts with knowing what to say in One on One Meetings with your boss.  


Do you have any comments, questions or tips about one-on-one meetings between managers and employees? Do you have any good managing your boss tips? Please help the rest of us out by sharing in the comments below.


If you think about it, the job of a Boss is to get people to do stuff. But getting people to do what you want must be one of the toughest things in the world. That’s why WWW.BOSS.CAMP is about making managing easy in just an hour a week. The program includes topics such as:

  • How to hire for performance,
  • How to motivate employees,
  • What are bad employee motivators,
  • What you must do as a manager but isn't on your job description,
  • How leaders get power.