The parts of the job you like the most, and the least

The parts of the job you like the most, and the least
Photo by Ian Schneider / Unsplash

Understanding your employees' preferences on the different parts of the job can help you support them more effectively. One way to improve this understanding is to discuss what tasks the employee likes and dislikes in a role. Remember that employees have individual likes and dislikes, likely even surprising ones. It's best to approach the topic without assumptions.

These conversations need to be confidential and take place in a trusting environment. The focus should be on on the benefits to the employee.

Guidelines to the manager

  1. Begin the meeting by clearing the space for discussion. Address any pressing issues or questions before diving into the topic of the one-on-one meeting
  2. Discuss what the employee recalls as the past favorite parts of jobs or roles.
  3. Discuss which parts of the current job the employee likes least or dislikes. Why that choice? Avoid yes/no answers and jumping to solutions and conclusions. Ask open-ended questions.
  4. Discuss which parts of the job the employee likes the most? What makes this part of the job more enjoyable? Explore the task, environment, and situation - where, what, how, when, and why?
  5. Brainstorm how we could build on what worked in the past. Could the situations or the environment be changed so that at least on some parts of the job, it would be more enjoyable?
  6. Summarize the observations from the conversation and list actions you would like to implement in the future.

It is essential to communicate the higher purpose of the conversation and get the employee's permission before sharing information. Managers should consistently communicate that the purpose of the discussion is to improve team management.

An example meeting agenda, for inserting into the calendar invitation.

The meeting invitation, calendar reservation

Title/topic/subject: One-on-One Meeting - The parts of the job you like the least, and the most
Date: [insert date]
Time: [insert time]
Location: [insert room or a link to a virtual meeting]


  • Address any pressing issues or questions prior to starting the day's topic (5 min)
  • Favorite parts, tasks of previous jobs or roles (5 min)
  • Least favorite part of the current job or role (5 min)
  • Favorite part of the current job, role (5 min)
  • Ideation on improving job enjoyment (5 min)
  • Key takeaways and action items (2 min)

Purpose of the topic today

  • Gain insight into employee's preferences and job satisfaction
  • Gain insight into employee's dislikes
  • Discuss ways to improve work experience

Feel Free to send any questions in advance.

Best regards, [Your Name]

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