Manager Tools "Basics"


Now that we've been producing weekly podcasts for almost 7 years, new listeners to the show are often confused (understandably so) on where to start. What are the foundational podcasts, the core principles that underly the Manager Tools philosophy?

We've listened and here it is! The definitive list of the "must listen to" podcasts. If you're a new listener, these are the podcasts you need to listen to.

Every Manager Effective

RSS Feed

And here is the link to the RSS feed with these podcasts only:

For iTunes users, click here to visit the iTunes podcast page and add to iTunes:


Related Documents

During the Basics casts, we refer to a number of useful documents or forms you can use. You'll find them here.

One on Ones

One on Ones are the core of The Management Trinity. Effective Managers know that to achieve exceptional results, we must create relationships with each of their directs. To do THAT, we must spend time every week focusing on the direct and their work.

Virtually everything Manager Tools recommends is built upon a firm relationship with one's directs, and the best way we know to make that happen is One on Ones.

Start Here. You don't have to do anything else for 2 months besides One on Ones. It will change your managerial life.

One on Ones - Part 1

  [Play in Popup]

One on Ones - Part 2

  [Play in Popup]

One on Ones - Part 3

  [Play in Popup]

One on Ones, Questions

  [Play in Popup]


As a manager, you're responsible for the results that your team produces. Results are nothing more than the aggregated behaviors of everyone who works for you. So, effective managers know that we've got to have a way to talk to our directs about their behaviors. The Feedback Model gives us the way to do it.

It's simple, direct, and easy to learn. Managers who adopt this Manager Tool get more effective results from their teams more quickly.

Feedback - Part 1

  [Play in Popup]

Feedback - Part 2

  [Play in Popup]

Feedback - Part 3

  [Play in Popup]

Feedback - Part 4

  [Play in Popup]

Feedback, Revisited

  [Play in Popup]

Improve Your Feedback with DiSC

  [Play in Popup]

Coaching (2 Shows)

As a manager, you're responsible not only for results, but also for improving results over time. That means you're responsible for improving the skills - the behaviors - of your team. Feedback gets you started, and Coaching helps everyone on your team improve.

If you haven't had a good experience with coaching, it's because you've been misled about how hard it is. But with the Manager Tools Coaching Model, you can coach everyone on your team in 5 minutes per week during your One on Ones.

Coaching, Part 1

  [Play in Popup]

Coaching, Part 2

  [Play in Popup]


Delegation is the quiet 4th member of The Manager Tools Effective Manager Trinity. Effective Managers delegate routinely, because they not only know how (described here), but also because they understand that delegation is a key engine of corporate profitable growth. Adding more people when you have more work isn't as effective as growing the team you already have.

Delegation - Part 1

  [Play in Popup]

Delegation - Part 2

  [Play in Popup]

The Juggling Koan

  [Play in Popup]

Rolling Out the Manager Tools Trinity (4 shows)

We've been asked a thousand questions about what to do and when to do it when it comes to the Management Trinity, and we've finally gotten frustrated enough to do something about it. We assumed that a lot of the ideas we're going to share here just made sense, and managers were taking the parts of the Trinity step by step, mastering each one, and adding new parts as they were able.

And then we got an email complaining that putting ALL FOUR of the Trinity in place all at once was "JUST TOO HARD".

And, that listener was right – it was too hard – and we weren't helping by not sharing our guidance. We've shared these ideas with hundreds of corporate client managers…and now it's time to share it with everyone.

Step by step, here's how you do it. If you ask us, if there WERE a Manager Tools Hall of Fame (HOF), this cast would be in it.

Rolling Out The Trinity - Part 1

  [Play in Popup]

Rolling Out The Trinity - Part 2

  [Play in Popup]

Rolling Out The Trinity - Part 3

  [Play in Popup]

Rolling Out The Trinity - Part 4

  [Play in Popup]

Running Effective Meetings (3 shows)

Every Effective Manager knows how to run a solid meeting. You've been to bad meetings - they start late, finish late, get little done, and a few people talk about stuff that isn't on the agenda. That doesn't happen if you run your meetings this way - at least in part because we tell you what an agenda IS. If you're thinking this sounds old fashioned, this is how Google runs their meetings.

Effective Meetings, Part 1

  [Play in Popup]

Effective Meetings, Part 2

  [Play in Popup]

Effective Meetings, Part 3

  [Play in Popup]


Solution to a Stalled Technical Career

If you're a technical person, you've surely wondered about your career path, and how to ensure you're getting the most out of your work life. This cast takes a different approach than most in the IT world - it starts with building relationships with folks on the business side (gasp). It works - ask your bosses.

  [Play in Popup]

Every Manager Effective

All Done!


Thanks for the great reminder (I think I said I would do it at the conference) ... all done.

Enjoy the holidays!

Best Regards,

Interview series podcasts downloads to iTunes

Withdrawn - it now works. guess I should have waited a couple of hours.

Podcast Titles

Hi Mike & Mark,

The "basics" RSS is great! Since I recently discovered Manager Tools, I went hog-wild downloading all the podcasts. While I was wading through the various topics, I ended up changing the "album" name for each cast as a matter of organizing the various topics (for the first half that were MP3's and not recognized as podcasts by iTunes). I ended up with "albums" like: meetings, the trinity, the stuff, etc. A similar list of RSS feeds might be a great idea to add to this.

One point of feedback I'd like to offer... for people starting out, the cast names in the list found on this page differ from the ones on the feed. At first glance, one might think they are different. Even when you take a closer look, there's a good amount of deciphering that has to take place to identify the casts. For example, Coaching Part 1, Coaching Part 2, Coaching Part 3, Coaching Part 4, actually translate to "the art of coaching, more on coaching, etc. on the RSS.

Other than that... your existence is invaluable and I've loved every cast so far!


love the Manager tools

my question-- is that -- is there a difference between male and female leadership or is management affected by diversity?

The Trinity

Hello Mark and Mike,

I have been listening to the Manager tools for quite some time.

I have been recently appointed to lead a project within my company and I am now leading a team of 5 people.

In my company, Management means objective meeting every quarter and nothing else. In this environment , it is kind of difficult to feel connected and supported. I have decided to implement the Trinity.

So it is time to show that there is a more efficient and powerfull way to get the team on board and help them perform. It is all about change of behavior, right ?

I will send you later my experience and feedback from my team.

Keep it up with your excellent shows and thank you for  sharing your experience with us.



Static in MP3 files


I am new to this site, my manager put me on to it and it's great!  I have stated listening to the MT Basics podcasts and I can't seem to get through the first feedback podcast without getting to a point (not the same point each time) and then it's just static, can't hear anything else.  The one-on-one's were fine, didn't have this issue.  I thought it must have been because they are premium content and they were protected but that's not indicated anywhere.  So I have tried downloading again (I prefer download to streaming) and the same thing happens.  Any ideas?



Comment on Session "Coaching, Part 3"

Hi Mike & Mark,

I listen to your podcast every week and have benefited from many of your podcasts. Thank you for bringing your personal experience to the table and helping us learn from that. Having said that, I do want to comment on something I do not agree with.

Regarding  you podcast on "Coaching Part 3" I do believe that there is a good chance you have come accross some Indians who are not considerate around others about Personal Hygiene. You mentioned that , perhaps "This inconsideration" is ok in India but is not considered normal in US environments.

I dont think that is true at all. Lack of Personal Hygiene is looked down upon in any country. So, I think it is wise NOT to generalize "Indian Nationals" as less concerned about Personal Hygiene.

Sometimes we just do not have enough evidence information to generalize our belief and that is how myth is born. India is a developing country and has many shortcomings but that doesnot imply that the country do not try to address issues/concerns which are universal.

Here is something along the line from Bertrand Russel:-)

What a man believes upon grossly insufficient evidence is an index into his desires -- desires of which he himself is often unconscious. If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence. The origin of myths is explained in this way.





This is great!

This is great!

ok ok, I'm late in tuning in

Mark, Mike,

I am a project manager in Germany and I heard about your website and saw the podcasts. Man, after listening to the basic tools I was stunned. I have never experienced anything like it. It is great to listen and hear all the great stuff and the urge to introduce everything at once is quite high.

Unfortunately as a project manager I don't get to introduce some of these fine techniques as not every project is as long as the initial period to introduce one on ones ... :-(

I am looking forward to the other podcast episodes!

But I will try and at least start it. Who knows maybe you get to see the same project people again and at least they know the procedure.

In any case I thank you very much for a superb podcast and keep it up!




Extra materials

I've been listening to all the 'basics' podcasts including the 'rolling out the trinity' series. Really great stuff! One thing I can't seem to find though that was mentioned in the podcasts are the materials - there was an email template mentioned, and a weekly one-on-one form. Where can I find these?

Hi Stevedonie

Glad you found the podcasts useful. You can find all the documents you need on this page:


Show me the money


Great materials. Many thanks.

I'm building a leadership curriculum for an organization. In one section - I teach people why/how to do 1:1s. Last week, I was doing an alpha teach with colleagues on my team and got the following comment:

"Look, many of the people who will be taking your class don't do 1:1 - some of them may never have had a 1:1. You're asking people to take a lot of time to do these. Where's the ROI?"

It's a worthy question. I suspect I can cull a few dozen testimonials from the comments sections in these podcast pages. I think those might be helpful to show. I'm also wondering if you have any quantitative data around 1:1s? and a collection of testimonials?



New & Eager Manager

I recently made the transition from "individual contributor" to "manager".  Although I have been listening to Manager Tools for years, I find myself referring to these "Manager" casts (in addition to classic "Career Tools") for references in basic professional skills and best management practices.

A quick thank you

... from Ukraine. I've been contemplating on applying one-on-ones for a while, and finally did this after re-listening to your one-on-one podcast series on a long run this weekend. I used your email sample text and adapted that to my situation slightly, and the response that I'm getting is great - from "great idea" to "I'm already thinking on my list of things to talk about" )) People are concerned though about the idea of having a conversation in a public area, but looks like we're getting past this pushback. Thanks again, and keep up the great job that you're doing. Also, let me know if you ever need a sample email in Russian ))

South West of England....!!!

Hi Mike & Mark,

Your great advice has reached sunny Plymouth in the South West England! I have been following your basic casts for the last few months and am seeing positive results already. I have recommended the casts to my colleagues and manager and I'm hoping to attend the London conferences next year.

It is hugley refreshing to receive "how to" advice as apposed to theory, my company has invested very little resource into training managers on "how to" be effective managers and personally having this resource available is fantastic!

Thanks again for the great work! Maybe a business revolution is now starting in Plymouth haha!


Great Content!

Finally, something useful in the world of management techniques.  As an avid researcher and practitioner of management and leadership, I have been disappointed more often than not with the content that so many "experts" provide (or fail to provide) in their books, seminars, webinars, etc.  Your content goes from the world of the fortune teller (pretty easy to be general and make it sound good) to the world of the teacher and mentor (gives information and application which provides relevancy).  I will follow your site and share it with all the people that I want to see succeed in their professional lives.

Thanks much!


Great podcasts!

I have to say that I just found your site.  I have been a manager for 1 year and already do the trinity you have spoken about, but listening to your podcast's for the manager basics have really helped me fine tune my one on ones, feedback, coaching, and delegation.  Thank you sooooo much for posting these!

Solution to a Stalled Technical Career

I'm not seeing the Solution to a Stalled Technical Career podcast in the RSS feed. Would you mind double-checking to see if it is there?  [I'm using a new podcast app on my phone, so it may just be that I don't know how to use the app, yet.]

Thank you,


rolling out the trinity

 I was recently promoted to manager - actually not effective until 7/1, but my previous boss who's role I now have has already moved into that role and passed the buck, so I'm very happy another manager turned me on to your website and pod cast. I'm loving it and have listed to most of the Basics and a few from your normal feed. 

Question: Have you posted anywhere the schedule you suggest for rolling out the trinity? Is this paid content?

Thank you in advance for your reply - and thanks for all your great work. I'm looking forward to improving my behaviors and helping my directs to do the same so we can all be more effective contributors to our company.