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The New One Minute Manager - Book summary

In this updated version of the bestselling book, The One Minute Manager, the authors share 3 important secrets that will help you to concurrently get better results, have more time, and empower the people around you to be more effective and fulfilled. Similar to the original book, the authors, Ken Blanchard & Spencer Johnson, use a fable to illustrate the key ideas. In this free version of The New One Minute Manager summary, we’ll outline the 3 secrets that can help you/your team to find job satisfaction, make meaningful contributions, and feel engaged and appreciated.

The simple story is about a smart young man, who has been looking all over the world for a great manager to work for and learn from. He finally finds a great manager, who is known as the “New One Minute Manager”. The manager (a) has found the secret formula to concurrently achieve results for the company, and fulfillment for his team; and (b) is able to adapt his techniques to keep up with rapid changes.

The 3 Secrets of The New One Minute Manager

By interviewing the New One Minute Manager and his managers, the young man discovers his 3 Secrets, is eventually offered a job, and becomes a New One Minute Manager himself.

SECRET #1: One Minute Goals

One common problem in organizations is the lack of clearly defined roles and responsibilities. In order for people to be effective:

  • They must know exactly what their goals are and what success looks like; and
  • This definition must be shared between the staff and supervisor.

One-Minute Goals are about setting goals that can fit in 1 page, and be reviewed daily in less than 1 minute every day. In our full 9-page summary, we outline how to use One-Minute Goals effectively, including how to develop and review them, and facilitate self-management in your staff.

After setting the one-minute goals, stay in close contact with your staff:

  • Monitor their activities or results, and request for short progress reports.
  • It’s vital to explain that the reason for your close supervision is not to pick on their mistakes, but to catch them doing something right.

This paves the way for you to apply the other 2 secrets of the New One Minute Manager: to praise people when they do something right, and re-direct them when they are off-track.

SECRET #2: One Minute Praisings

Most people don’t know how they are performing, nor how they can improve. Often, managers wait until the annual performance review to provide feedback – by then, there’re too many incidents or issues to be addressed in specific, actionable detail.

Once you notice a staff doing something right, offer your one-minute praise. In a nutshell:

  • Share your praises (30 seconds).
  • Pause for a short while.
  • Affirm your staff (30 seconds).

SECRET #3: One Minute Re-Direct

What happens when people make mistakes or do something wrong? Similar to the one-minute praising, the key is to provide feedback as soon as possible, using the One-Minute Re-Direct.

Once you’re aware of a mistake, quickly check if the goal is clear; if not, start by clarifying it. Then, apply the One-Minute Re-Direct:

  • Address the mistake (30 seconds).
  • Pause for a short while.
  • • Affirm the staff (30 seconds).

Get more tips on how to conduct One-Minute Praisings and One-Minute Redirects effectively, in our complete summary. In the meantime, here’s a quick overview of the 3 secrets:The New one Minute Manager summary_Overview
Obviously, it will be ideal to hire star players, give them their 1-page goal and have them score 100% all by themselves. Unfortunately, such people are rare and expensive to hire. On the other hand, it’s also ineffective to hire average people, leave them alone and hope that they’ll miraculously deliver outstanding results.

The best way is to hire people with potential, and methodologically coach them to become star players. The One-Minute Goals give people a clear target to aim for, and the One-Minute Praisings and One-Minute Re-Directs help them with progressive course-correction, until they have the knowledge and skills to achieve stellar performance.

In our full book summary, we’ll also explain why the 3 Secrets work, with additional tips to implement them effectively with your team so both the staff and organization can win.

Remember: people work for themselves not for you as the manager. Your true goal is to empower people to self-manage and feel good about it, so you need not manage them. That way, you’ll free up your own time to plan and improve your own results, enjoy less stress and more time for yourself and your loved ones, and positively impact others to enjoy greater success and fulfillment.

Getting the Most from The New One Minute Manager

In this article, we’ve briefly outlined some of the key insights from the fable but for more details, do get our complete book summary bundle which includes an infographic, 9-page text summary, and a 19-minute audio summary!The New One Minute Manager summary - book summary bundle

This is an extremely easy-to-read book, presented in a short story that anyone can identify with. Although the ideas are simple, they have remained relevant after 35 years, and are practical and easy to apply in our hectic workplace. If you enjoyed this article, you can purchase the book here for the full fable, or go to

About the Authors of The New One Minute Manager

The One Minute Manager is written by Ken Blanchard & Spencer Johnson.

Ken Blanchard, PhD is one of the most influential leadership experts in the world. He has co-authored 60 books, including Raving Fans and Gung Ho! with Sheldon Bowles. In 2005 he was inducted into Amazon’s Hall of Fame as one of the top 25 bestselling authors of all time. He’s also the recipient of numerous leadership awards and honors.

Spencer Johnson, MD is one of the most admired thought leaders and widely-read authors in the world, best known for his #1 bestseller, “Who Moved My Cheese?”. Called “The King of Parables” by USA Today, Dr. Johnson is an expert in taking complex subjects and presenting simple solutions that work. Together with his wife, Margie, Ken founded The Ken Blanchard Companies, a leading international training and consulting firm. His brief books contain insights and practical tools that millions of people use to enjoy more happiness and success with less stress.

The New One Minute Manager Quotes

“The more we understand why something works, the more apt we are to use it.”

“Help people reach their full potential. Catch them doing something right.”

“The best minute I spend is the one I invest in people.”

“People who feel good about themselves produce good results.”

“Performance review should be an ongoing process, not something you do only once a year.”

“Your job is to show people how to manage themselves and enjoy it. You want them to succeed when you’re not around.”

Click here to download The New One Minute Manager book summary and infographic

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