Getting To Know You

Ryan Hawk Blog Post 25 Comments

“People Won’t Care How Much You Know Until They Know How Much You Care.”

When starting a new leadership role, it’s important to learn as much as much as possible about my team.  Before working to implement new plans and processes, my team needs to know that I care more about them as people than as an “FTE” or an “Employee.”  They are people who have hobbies, desires, and families to support outside of work.  I urge them to bring their whole selves to work and this “Getting To Know You” exercise helps do that.  I email this to each member of the team, ask them to fill it out, and then I fill one out for them.  I keep all of their answers in a Google Sheet and refer to it often.

In addition to doing this when I’m the new leader, I do it on a yearly basis. Teams change, new people join, etc…  The document evolves and is updated with new, more interesting questions as I go… I’d love to get your thoughts and additional questions to add to it.  Email me: to discuss.

Here it is…


Mailing address:

Years of employment with the company:

Education and School(s):

What do you hope I do as a leader?

What do you want to change about our current processes?

What is your most important tool for figuring out what our clients want?

What would you like to be known for?

What inspires you?

What are your career goals?

Other than your family, what are you most grateful for?

What would your five closest friends say are your best qualities? (If you’re unsure, ask them):

What well-known people would you like to have dinner with?

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

What is your dream job?

What is your biggest fear?

What are your hobbies?

If you were asked to give a commencement speech, what would the title be?

What are some questions you ask to help truly understand how someone thinks?

Who do you admire most?

What book or books have impacted you the most?

What is your favorite quote?

What is your favorite documentary (or movie)?

What are your family member names & birth dates?

If you could be ANYWHERE in the world, where would you be right now? Who would you be with? And what would you be doing?

Comments 25

  1. This is perfect. I’m a new team lead and was trying to come up with a good way to implement some Getting To Know You activities.

  2. Thanks for posting, this is a very useful tool. I like to also ask:

    • What’s the most important decision you’re facing?
    • What could you say “No” to? (from Essentialism)

  3. Ryan, perhaps I’m a bit old fashioned as the answers to these questions are things I would learn through personal conversations with the people I work with whether they are direct or indirect reports to me or perhaps peers I worked with on a daily basis.

    The current trend in business today is to eliminate performance reviews and concentrate on coaching and building relationships with team members. If more leaders/managers would spend the time to get to know their people and know the answers to the questions above; performance reviews and career development discussions would be a piece of cake.

    I think I’ve shared the Manager Assimilation question form that I believe we typically give GE credit for developing on Learning Leaders FB page and I’ll do so again.

  4. Pingback: Episode #279: James Clear – How Tiny Changes Can Equal Remarkable Results (Atomic Habits) | The Learning Leader Show

  5. Pingback: Episode #280: Danny Iny – Why You Shouldn’t Go To College | The Learning Leader Show

  6. Pingback: Episode #278: Mitch Albom – Tuesdays With Morrie & The Five People You Meet In Heaven | The Learning Leader Show

  7. Pingback: Episode #277: Tom Goodwin – Life Advice From The #1 Influencer On LinkedIn | The Learning Leader Show

  8. Pingback: Episode #276: Scott Belsky – How To Find Your Way Through The Hardest Part Of Any Venture (The Messy Middle) | The Learning Leader Show

  9. Pingback: Episode #281: George Raveling - Eight Decades Of Wisdom: From Dr. Martin Luther King To Michael Jordan - The Learning Leader Show

  10. Pingback: Episode #282: Seth Godin - You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn To See - The Learning Leader Show

  11. Pingback: Episode #283: Tyler Cowen - The Path To Prosperity In A Disordered World - The Learning Leader Show

  12. Pingback: Episode #284: Michael Lombardi - A Masterclass In Building Teams And Winning Championships - The Learning Leader Show

  13. Pingback: Episode #285: Scott Gerber - Stop Networking And Start Building Relationships That Matter - The Learning Leader Show

  14. Pingback: Episode #286: Phil Jones - How To Build Your Squad (The WHO In Your Life) - The Learning Leader Show

  15. Pingback: Episode #290: Scott Harrison - Redemption, Compassion, & The Transformative Power Within Us All - The Learning Leader Show

  16. Pingback: Episode #291: Andy Rachleff - What Do You Uniquely Offer That People Desperately Want? - The Learning Leader Show

  17. Pingback: Episode #292: Beth Comstock - You Don't Need Permission (Former GE Vice Chair) - The Learning Leader Show

  18. Pingback: Episode #293: Brent Beshore - How To Get Rich Slow & Live An Optimal Life - The Learning Leader Show

  19. Pingback: Episode #294: Warren Berger - How To Ask More Beautiful Questions - The Learning Leader Show

  20. Pingback: Episode #287: Robert Greene (Part 1) - 5 Strategies For Becoming A Master Persuader - The Learning Leader Show

  21. Pingback: Episode #288: Robert Greene (Part 2) - The Laws Of Human Nature - The Learning Leader Show

  22. Pingback: Episode #295: Todd Herman - Using Alter Egos To Transform Your Life - The Learning Leader Show

  23. Pingback: The Learning Leader Show With Ryan Hawk: #296 With Emily Fletcher

  24. Pingback: How to be a great leader by balancing tension | Leon Purton

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *