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Submitted by James22 on


Does anyone use ONE notebook for O3's and general day to day meetings? If so, are you able to go back and find what you're looking for easily?

I'm trying to simplify some things.

j3snyder's picture
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I use OneNote as my primary notetaking tool. It has fantastic indexing and searching. I keep a separate notebook for each direct, one for all my other meetings, and one for miscellaneous notetaking. Each recurring meeting gets it's own tab, with a page for each instance of the meeting.

You can also create custom tags to highlight text. For example, I have a tag for positive and negative feedback that allows me to search a notebook for all instances of that tag. The tags are super useful for annual reviews.

pucciot's picture
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Hey - If One notebook works for you that is OK.
I would caution and ask you to consider this.

That O3's (and the O3 notebook) are about your relationship and performance of each direct.  Not about your chronological work day.

When you do annual appraisals or Steel Cage Death matches (check in podcasts for that word) I suggest that having one different notebook for each Direct is the better way to go.
They would be easier to review one notebook at a time.

When you give feedback or performance notes -- where do you put those in your Chronological Notebook so that it is associated with that particular Direct ?

I often paste performance notes and post-its in my Direct's notebook, And jot down things I want to bring up to them at the next O3.
This way when I open their notebook --- my notes are right there on the page for that week’s O3.

Just some things to consider.

Good Luck


j3snyder's picture
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To answer your specific question @TJPuccio, I have a single onenote notebook for each direct. There is a tab for O3 meetings. There is a page for each specific O3 meeting. So if I have something to bring up in the next O3, I just type or write it into that date's O3 notes. For feedback, I have a formatting tag. Highlight the feedback given, whether in an O3 meeting or on a separate page, mark as "+feedback" or "-feedback", then at annual reviews, I have everything in one place. For stickler's of the MT rule about taking notes in meetings, OneNote can sync with a tablet as needed (or can take a picture of physical notes if desired).

Need to review the year's O3? they are in a single tab.
Need to find all instances of feedback? Seach the direct's notebook for those markers
Have a specific phrase/conversation I know I had but can't find? the index search in onenote is phenomenal
Need to link between existing pages (difficult in a paper notebook)? Create a link.
Steel cage death match? I can easily search onenote for relevant material and use copy/paste commands to put it into whatever format is needed. Can't do that with paper.
What about ad hoc in person meetings? write on paper then transpose into onenote or take a picture.

I can do all of the MT recommendations in onenote and more.

Note: I am a leader in a fully remote department so 95% of my meetings are virtual anyway.

jrb3's picture
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In fact, I went with one notebook for general day-to-day, and one three-ring-binder with one section per direct.  I built on the O3 template form accompanying the One-on-On Hall of Fame guidance -- see for links.  As a very high C, I really needed the reminder to capture spouse/family info as triggers to ease into later conversations.

I preferred the focus these separations provided, specifically for the ease of tracing back to previous O3's during O3, and for assembling year-end and ad-hoc summaries.