Headway is a guidebook to running one-on-ones for humans.

We all want to feel fulfilled at work and become better human beings. But it's easy to get stuck in our day-to-day tasks and forget to pause and reflect on what's really important.

One-on-ones are a powerful tool to help managers accomplish this with their team. Headway is a guide to doing this is a more human, calm, and inclusive way.

You'll learn why you should prioritize perception over reality, why distraction is a good thing, why you should skip your one-on-ones by default, and how to help your team make more headway with their most difficult challenges.

If you're new to one-on-ones, this book will give you a two-year head start. If you've been doing them for a while, you'll find ideas in here to challenge how you approach them and what you—and your team—should be getting out of them.
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What's in the book

A quick list of essays and topics included in Headway

Stop Calling Them 1:1s

Skip By Default

Focus On Feeling

Be (Usefully) Distracted

Forget The Business

Avoid Action Items

Throw Out The Scripts

Uncomfortable, or Just Unfamiliar?

Add Your Perspective

Think More Like an Editor

There's Always a Struggle

Hi there, Patrik here!

Writer & Designer. Previously Product Research Lead at Buffer and Operations Manager at Parnassus Books.

When I first started holding regular one-on-ones with my teams a few years ago, I had no clue what I was doing. I made lots of mistakes. But I also did research, talked to other managers, and tried many different approaches.

I learned that one-on-ones don't have to be scary or complicated. There's an easier way. And it all starts with accepting the complexities of being human, rather than trying to optimize our way around them.

This book is an attempt to shine a light on a simpler and more human way of managing teams by focusing on one tool in particular: the one-on-one.