The subject says it all. If you use paper to take your one-on-one notes, how long do you keep them?

I find myself with pretty full file cabinet by the time performance appraisal comes around. I like to reference the O3 notes as I put together the annual PA, but find they have little value after that.

What's your standard practice?

tlhausmann's picture
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Because I have mine in bound notebooks I end up with the notes indefinitely.

If I had them in three ring binders as suggested I would keep them *at least* two years so that I could use the notes for annual goal review and evaluation (the past year & previous year) while showing a history.

HMac's picture

Forever. Why not?
Even though I review them in preparation for annual reviews (and quarterly progress updates!), I don't try to capture everything in the rollup.

To be honest, I don't go back into really old notes very often - but I keep them all the same.


ctomasi's picture

I'm going to try a tablet PC in short order and the OneNote solution that Mike S. showed at the Chicago Conf. in the near future. Electronically... I'll keep them forever. After a year, paper just seems like a lot of... paper. (from the Manager in a cube.)

HMac's picture

Chuck - a lot of people (me included) have found the tabletPC to be a pretty unsatisfactory replacement for paper. Here's my highly technical explanation: it's just....clunky.

I couldn't get past the stage where it felt like it was "getting in the way" of simply taking was like I was making something simple into something complex...

Just my two cents.

PS - If you don't like keeping the paper after a year, SCAN it into PDF's. That'll free up cube space...


AManagerTool's picture

I have the tablet PC. I don't use it for notes. One note is fantastic for meetings because, quite frankly, you look cool scribbling into a laptop. It is also great for research on ideas because you can compile all kinds of information like a scrapbook. However, it is HOT and clunky sitting on my lap when I am trying to have a personal interaction with my staff. It is distracting in that situation.

HMac's picture

I hot forgotten about the "hot lap" problem. So true :shock:

RichRuh's picture
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I trash mine about a month after giving performance reviews.

raulcasta's picture

Here's what I do: I have a MS-Word document where I type in my paper-scribbled notes from my O3's. I do this during a 30min session that I schedule for myself weekly to prepare for my O3's (I have 8 directs). I then file my paper documents by direct in a 3-ring binder for quick reference when I prepare for my quarterly performance assessments. At the end of the year, I practically recycle all paper- no sense in keeping it any longer.

What do I keep? Of course, the weekly O3 electronic files, which I save neatly by date. Each week's O3 sheet is fresh with current bulleted info that prompt me during my 10-15 minutes when I follow up on my directs. I also have a tracking of relevant feedback that I deliver during O3's (which I believe are more formal than regular feedback that I give outside of O3's).


tree123's picture

This is one of those topics that makes people some people squirm, some people pontificate, and some just shake their heads in wonder.

Lance E. Robinson's picture

I just finished performance reviews and have a stack of 1 on 1 sheets collated by direct sitting on a table in my office. It was tremendously beneficial to have them when I was writing up my directs appraisels but now I'm thinking that I'm going to put them in file 13 unless someone can give me a great reason to hang to them.