Hi Team, Anyone has one on one questionnaire to understand employees better.. Can anyone share the questionnaire. Regards Dhanashree Jawale
From India, Pune
Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Learning & Teaching Fellow (retired)
Founder & Director, V K Dynamic Leadership
Manager - Hr
Sr. Manager Hr
Nagarkar Vinayak L
Hr And Employee Relations Consultant

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Dinesh Divekar

Dear Dhanashree,

You could have mentioned the reason for having a one-on-one with HR. Is it because of the:

a) "Stay Interview" by HR

b) employee has raised some grievance

c) there is some dispute amongst the staff members of the same department

d) inter-departmental rivalry

e) exit interview by HR (because employee wanted to separate from the company)

f) under-performance of some employee

g) some employee has done something exceptional

h) career progression, promotion etc

i) complaint by the employee for under-rating in the performance appraisal

j) employee has resigned but HR wanted the employee to continue (please note, this is different from (a) above

k) employee has committed misconduct or some there is an issue of indiscipline

l) employee involves in gossiping, office romance etc

m) persuading the employee to take up some secondary duties

n) abrasive behaviour with the subordinates by the HOD or the Manager

o) workplace toxicity

p) still something else

In each of the case, the context for the one-on-one with HR will be different. Secondly, though the reason could be anything from above, the issues will differ from one industry to another and one company to another. Lastly, one-on-one with HR will depend on the type of organisation's culture also.

There is no one-size-fits-all questionnaire for a one-on-one with HR. The questions will differ in each case.

Lastly, the method of asking questions will also differ. It depends on the communication skills of the HR as well as the employee who will sit in front of HR. Other factors like expressiveness, command over vocabulary, ability to give examples also matter.


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore

Hello Dhanashree25,
Now a days attrition ratio is one of the biggest issue of industries. People looking for their growth in very short time and I believe that there is nothing harm in it.
I am trying to implement succession planning in my current organization. Can you suggest me that what steps I have to follow it?
Mahesh Jinjavadiya

From India, Rajkot
Dinesh Divekar

Dear Mahesh,

You have asked for the inputs on "Succession Planning" in your company. The step is to understand the difference between "Career Planning and Succession Planning". If you search on Google then you will find several websites giving this difference. You may click here to refer to it.

Do you work in the HR Department? If yes then I recommend you doing career planning for your employees. Initially begin with the key employees and then extend it to all other employees. However, before discussing the career plan with the employee concerned, I recommend obtaining the approval for each career plan.


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Nagarkar Vinayak L

Dear madam,

For one on one interview with HR to" understand employee better" is certainly appreciable initeative.

In HR's day today interactions with the employees is for purpose on hand, some query, performance related issues, relatioship issues with co workers or higher ups etc. This allows only narrow view of him or her. HR need to know the employee as a whole person in family, social and work setting. In depth knowledge of his habits of thinking and doing things and why of the same is crucial data.

Keeping above in mind, you could form questions to elicit responses for habits and causative data. Some of the possible areas of data, could be:

* Family composition, occupation of parents, siblings and his order of birth

* Upbringing in village/small town or in city settings.

* Marital status/married life

* Travel time from home to work place

* Hobbies and interests

* Relationship issues, if any, at home and work place

* Job/competency fit and factors liked/disliked

* Career aspirations.

*Areas of dissatisfaction at work place.

* Does he work only for the living or wants to contribute.

The above is not comprehensive list nor put in chronological order. You may improvise it and most important is -do this interview.


Vinayak Nagarkar

HR and Employee Relations Consultant

From India, Mumbai
Dinesh Divekar

Dear Mr Vinayak Nagarkar,

I refer to your above-mentioned reply and the list of the points for discussion mentioned therein.

Out of the 10 points that you have provided, I don't think that the first six points provide any enduring value to the HR professional. The points that you have mentioned are too personal and an average employee may not be that comfortable in sharing the information.

The mainstay of HR lies in improving human productivity. The productivity depends on the healthy interpersonal environment in the company, motivation of the employee, the skill set of the employee, supporting infrastructure etc. Therefore, if the HR professionals restrict their discussion on these issues the better. What if the HR professional asks some personal questions and employee starts thinking that HR can provide a solution too? What if because of the personal problems employee starts asking for some concessions? In such a situation, HR will be forced to say "No" to the concessions.

In view of this, I feel the last four points that related to the work should be asked. If an HR professional is competent then he/she may ask questions on what motivates the employee. The questions could be asked to check as to what extent employee's needs as per Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory have been fulfilled. Otherwise, HR may check what motivates the employee based on David McClelland's theory of motivation.

Questions on the fulfilment of the needs will give insight into the employee's thinking with respect to work.

Lastly, let us consider the world's No 1 country, the USA. The Americans are impersonal. In fact, they detest if the personal questions are asked. Notwithstanding impersonalness in the organisation's culture, a large number of companies have become industrial empires. In these companies, HR just concentrates on what happens during the eight hours that the employee spends at the workplace and never ever bothers about the personal issues. The personal issues are personal and need not be mixed in the work. They maintain the perfect demarcating line between personal and workplace issues. The demarcation helps in avoiding the transgression from either side too.

My contradictory views may not be considered as an affront. Please consider this as professional disagreement.


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Nagarkar Vinayak L

Dear Mr Divekar,
You have every right to express views on HR matters different from mine. This forum is meant for such churning .
I , however, do not share your views in totality.
I based and restricted my views on the query raised unlike yours which digressed into questioning the purpose of one to one HR interview when the purpose was made clear ' To understand employee better'.
Keeping the purpose in mind, I made suggestions which are also based on my own experience of one to one talk with 135 production male and female workers.
I refrained from giving readymade questionnaire and instead gave points for her to use it and frame her own questionnaire.
This kind of exercise has to be designed and carried out with lot of insight , skill and maturity which should facilitate drawing a person out of the shell and make him express inside view of his mind.
A few spin off of such talk was:
* The employee felt noticed, understood and cared for in expressing about everything from his personal, family and Social life.Unlike your apprehension, employees did not feel inhibited to share their personal issues.
* The employees shared what drives them to work, what difficulties they face and even gave constructive suggestions. Those formed valuable inputs for framing HR policies.
You should remember India is not America and you can't import threads of outlandish culture and plant here.
Your reference to Maslow's needs and hierarchy, is relevant and the same thing was attempted in my exercise in disguised manner when trying to know what drives them.
If you had attempted framing some questions based on it in your first reply, it would have done some good to lady HR professional instead of taking misplaced pedantic view by questioning the purpose and unnecessarily assuming them when it is there in black and white.
I am aware that such interventions are not a panecia for HR issues and much supportive preparations, process reforms, evaluation and innovative thinking needs to be put in place.
Vinayak Nagarkar
HR and Employee Relations Consultant

From India, Mumbai

Dear Dhanashree,
I am also doing such one-on-one sessions for my employees. I am using following set of questions. You can have a look and see if its helpful for you:
1.    How are you? How is life outside of work? (includes asking about family etc.)
2.    What are your dreams and aspirations?
3.    Where do you see yourself in the next 2 to 3 years?
4.    How do you feel about the companies vision?
5.    Can you give any inputs on effort required to make this happen?
6.    How can you contribute?
7.    What are your areas of growth and learning to achieve your desires?
8.    Any inputs and suggestion on implementing the values and creating the desired culture?
9.    What drives you? What motivates you to come to work each day?
10.  How is everything going with people you work with/on your team?
11.  What do you feel best about working here?
12.  What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment here?
13.  What’s not fun about working here?
14.  What worries you? What’s on your mind?
15.  Anything else you would like to share?
16.  Do you feel these kind of sessions are important?
Thanks & Regards

From India, Hyderabad

Agree with you shree. These kind of question and discussion motivate employee for giving their best performance.
From India, Rajkot

Dear Ms Dhanashree Jawale,
There are many questionnaire on this subject. Your object is not clear therefore we can not send it. Please send your clear requirement because this tool is very sensitive and have its own consequences, which can creat confusion and effect the career path of an Employee.
Thanks and regards,

From India, Delhi

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