Appling the O’3 and management trinity as a direct.


BLUF-I am very keen on getting our team to implement the Management trinity, especially O’3.

We are the system administrators for a large Hospital in New Zealand.

Our team consists of our Boss / Manager – He reports too one other boss within our building, plus the Head CIO in another building.

Under my boss is our team leader, and then my team of 11 Sys Admin’s in Total.  Our boss is also in charge of the telecoms team, 6 People in total.

Our Boss is very busy, and the few times that he has tried to offer a One on One type meeting, they are never productive, and often within a fortnight to a month have stopped, because something else came up.

Our Team Leader hasn’t taken on the role of One on One’s as he is also very busy doing a lot of high level technical work, rather than ‘managerial’ work.

What I’d like to know, is it possible for a direct to try and implement One on One’s.  Has anyone seen/heard this to be successful?

Many Thanks for your thoughts and Idea’s … Feel free to let me know if I need to add more detail.



12string's picture

This podcast titled One on Ones for the DIRECT would help you here.  In short, no do not try to implement one on one's with your boss.  This podcast would help you figure out a 'way around' that. 



k1w1onoe's picture

Thank you for your feedback 12-string –

I was thinking more as a direct, that I could lead the one on ones, as within our team this is not happening, rather than hoping and waiting for our current Management team to implement them.
I hope this helps clarify my question.
Thanks again,

thebeezer's picture

I don't think there is a specific cast about them, yet they have been alluded to in other casts.  My understanding is that they are run similar to the Project Manager O3s, with 15 minutes for the other person first and then 15 minutes for you.  The purpose is for you to better know your peers so your team can improve its relationships, and ultimately performance.

Don't do it because you're trying to change how your leaders lead because it won't work.  I also wouldn't recommend telling your leaders that you're doing this because they aren't, because they won't be receptive to it.  You're treading on dangerous ground if you push this as anything other than trying to work better with your peers. 

Good luck.

piratedave's picture


Are you trying to implement O3's from below, and you would act as a facilitator?  Mike and Mark recommended that you NOT try to implement O3's from below, even though you want to.  The podcast, Boss One On Ones: Professional Updates, lists the reasons why, rather forcefully.

Peer O3's might be doable as a way to build team relationships.  After all, O3's are really about building relationships, not just having a weekly meeting.  The only thing missing would be the ability to compel participation.  Between peers, though, I'm not sure of the difference between an O3 and conversation over lunch, since your peers don't report anything to you, and you don't pass information from the boss on.  These would not have the effect of building relationships with the boss, however.  If your boss and your team leader are both too busy to meet with you now, they will be too busy to meet with you for something you are trying to implement.  Unfortunately, they have the power over their schedule, not you.  It's frustrating to say the least.