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Tips for having a meaningful STEP checkpoint conversation

The STEP checkpoint provides time for you to have an open, two-way conversation with your manager that focuses on performance expectations, accomplishments and collaboration. It is an opportunity for you to give and receive feedback as well as to provide a status update on your goals and selected competencies. Discussing goals and competencies is as simple as reviewing the milestones that have been met, those in progress and any that have not progressed according to plan.

The majority of the time during the checkpoint meeting should be spent on the four discussion questions.

  • Fulfilling Accomplishments – Most fulfilling and other key accomplishments
  • Improvement Areas – Areas of focus and steps to take to bolster your performance
  • Resource Needs – Information, knowledge, skills and resources you need to master your job, accomplish goals and/or develop professionally
  • Manager Accountability – What your manager can do to help you be successful (Stop, Start or Continue)

Whether you’re an individual contributor or a manager, review these tips to engage in a more meaningful conversation.

  1. Make sure you are ready to give and/or receive feedback. Remember when giving feedback, give it the way you want to receive it.
  2. Be prepared to listen for understanding, not for planning your response
  3. Keep a growth mindset. Think about personal development and improved results.
  4. Assume positive intent.
  5. Be aware of and manage your triggers. If emotions run high, it’s ok to take a break.
  6. Ask for and provide concrete examples
  7. Say “Thank you”

Be sure to complete the required training as outlined below. If you need extra help, register for the optional live training or drop in to the office hours to chat with an expert.

* If a manager has not approved the Define Criteria stage for an employee(s), that employee(s) will not be able to complete the checkpoint stage of the process.

Training and resources

Required self-paced training is now available through the UC Learning Center:

STEP Checkpoints for Employees and Managers (@ 20 minutes)

STEP Checkpoints for Managers only (@ 15 minutes)

Checkpoint Demo for Employees and Managers (@ 5 minutes)

Checkpoint Demo for Managers only (@ 10 minutes)

Optional live training

Please note that employees are required to complete all required self-paced courses before attending the following optional support sessions.

Instructor-led training for managers and employees: Live sessions will expand on the materials presented in the required online courses. Participants will go deeper into preparing, giving and receiving feedback, and engaging in a two-way dialog. Multiple dates are available for employee classes and manager classes.

Coaching Lab for managers: This interactive Coaching Lab session for managers and supervisors provides an opportunity to practice strategies for giving feedback with a coaching lens. Come with a real-life example to practice with your peers.

Drop-in office hours: STEP office hours will take place every Friday in February from 9-10:30 a.m. (PT). No registration is required. Join via this Zoom link.

Additional information is available on the STEP website. For questions regarding your goals and appraisal process, please contact your manager or UCOP Human Resources business partner.

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