The One-Hour Question (And How it’ll Help You Learn More About Your Team)
When was the last time that you sat down and had real conversations with the people on your team?
As CEOs and founders, it’s easy to find ourselves lost in the metrics. You have so many different dashboards and spreadsheets at your disposal. It’s easy to spot surface-level problems using those numbers. You can see when you’re not making enough sales or when your people fall behind on their numbers.
And when that happens, you may slip into telling your team to go faster or to fix the bugs. Perhaps you’ve caught yourself telling your people to pull all-nighters to get your projects over the line.
You may think that’s okay as long as you’re offering plenty of perks and rewards. For example, you may offer free company dinners and access to dry cleaning services. The misconception here is that these things that your people actually want.
Perks like these aren’t things that your people can really use in their everyday lives. They’re certainly not things that they really need. You’re asking them to work in an unpleasant environment where they constantly have to push
Perhaps you’re so focused on the numbers that you’re losing sight of the people behind them.
That’s why it’s so important to communicate well with your people. Specifically, it’s crucial that you hold real conversations that help you to learn about who they are and what really drives them.
Without that knowledge, you’re going to keep pushing without offering incentives that have any value to your people. In the end, that creates resentment.
Here’s a simple technique that can help you to overcome these issues. It’s called the One-Hour Question.
What is the One-Hour Question?
It works like this.
You’re the manager of a team or you’re running a company. You have an entire group of people working with you. Maybe you even have a growing team, which can make it even harder to keep track.
Your job is to schedule an hour for each person on the team.
During that hour, you’re going to really talk to them about their work. This isn’t your cue to start telling the person what you need from them or how they could perform better.
The aim is to focus specifically on their work and how they’re doing it.
Focus your questions on what motivates the person. You’ll often find that money isn’t at the top of the list.
You’re looking to learn what really motivates the person you’re speaking to. What gives them the drive to get up and come into work each day?
What could you offer them that would make them happy about coming in early? Is there something they need from you that would make them more willing to work late?
What’s going to push them to want to go above and beyond?
You’re usually going to find that it has nothing to do with the extra percentage point you to add to their commission.
People have deep-seated motivations that go beyond the monetary. Part of the One-Hour conversation involves digging into those motivations. Find out what they are and how you can leverage them to improve performance.
And once you’ve done that, you can start learning about the sales techniques that will further improve performance.
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