CLEAR Connections®


Powerful Interactions.  Dramatic Results.


A Proactive Engagement Strategy: The Stay Interview.

Clear Connections can be an impactful component in your engagement strategies – But here’s the problem… Most leaders, particularly newer ones, are reluctant to open the door to a conversation about growth, career opportunity and the future.

They fear the tough questions… questions they may not be able to answer.

They fear raising expectations… expectations they may not be able to meet.

A typical one-on-one meeting between a leader and her team member is NEARLY ALWAYS about tasks and results. We believe this represents a serious missed opportunity!  Making it a priority to discuss your employee’s aspirations, preferences and growth, goes a long way toward igniting employee engagement.

Introducing CLEAR Connections®…

CLEAR Connections is a straightforward yet powerful solution that provides a process for these conversations to occur in a meaningful and comfortable way, regardless of how long the employee and leader have worked together.

CLEAR Connections meetings focus on four important employee preference areas and are discussed in an informally structured meeting.


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Elements of The CLEAR Connections® Solution

Step 1: Administer the FirstFit® Questionnaire

The FirstFit® questionnaire asks employees to rate and rank the leadership skills they value most and the components of their career that are most important to them right now.  It also measures an employee’s communication and recognition preferences.  This provides leaders the opportunity to ask team members valuable follow-up questions to help them more effectively manage their teams, take direct action on results, and build a work environment with high employee engagement and retention.

  • 8-minute questionnaire that asks employees their preferences in a leader, career, recognition, etc.
  • Ranks the importance of each employee’s leader competency preferences as well as their career preferences
  • Valuable process for employees changing leader alignment
  • Triggers a 1:1 conversation to review the results in a “Handshake Meeting”
Step 2: Leader Training

The Handshake Connection Leader Training Module is an e-learning module teaches leaders how to effectively conduct the Handshake Meeting with their team members based on their FirstFit survey results. This interactive module shares tips and illustrates ways leaders can maximize the value of the Handshake meetings. A companion, instructor led workshop is also available to supplement or replace the
e-learning module.

The leadership training module consists of the following:

  • Takes approximately 25 minutes to complete the online portion
  • Contains relevant and focused content divided into several learning topics
  • Delivered in short time-frames, allowing learners to complete them quickly
  • Offers progress checks, realistic job simulations, and printable learning points to support application of key skills
Step 3: Handshake Meeting

This is a structured, short 1:1 meeting between a leader and the team member to review FirstFit® Questionnaire results. The leader is guided to ask follow-up questions to best understand how to effectively lead each team member.  At the conclusion, the leader will share what he/she will do to meet each team members’ needs, and the employee will commit to being an active part of the employee engagement and retention effort.

Note: The solution also includes an interactive on-line learning module, Handshake Connection, which trains leaders step-by-step how to conduct a Handshake meeting and provides tips for an effective discussion

Step 4: Online Action Planning

An online action plan allows leaders and team members to summarize the outcomes of the Handshake Meeting, develop a plan to continue supporting their relationship, and increase the success of ongoing conversations.

The online action plan is documented and follows the employee to ensure future leaders can effectively build on the conversations and commitments of previous leaders and bond with their team members as quickly as possible. This is especially useful during organizational changes such as restructuring and mergers.  Additionally, completion of the online action plan can be tracked to provide accountability for leaders.

The benefits are:
• Easy to use online action planning form
• Built-in accountability and engagement metrics
• Tracking and alerts allow operations to execute and manage the program

Stay Interviews 101

Want to understand the basics of Stay Interviews? In this video we explain what Stay Interviews are and how they can improve employee engagement and retention.

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