Your project leader requests the entire team to gather at the meeting room later in the afternoon. You’ve just been tasked with taking notes for the meeting and you already feel yourself panicking for what’s to come. But before you come up with a lame excuse to skip the entire thing, it’s important to remember that preparing meeting minutes doesn’t have to be a daunting task for anyone.
By applying the right strategies, you can prepare an effective meeting minutes in no time.
For the minutes to be an accurate reflection of what took place during the meeting, there are certain elements that must be included in the document. Although the order of these components may vary, it generally consists of the following:
Before the meeting begins, it’s always a good idea to understand the type of information you’re required to document first. While your organization may have a specific content and format to follow, meeting minutes are generally created the same way.
1. Write the date and time of the meeting.
Bear in mind that your meeting minutes will serve as a reference for future endeavors. This may also serve as evidence to resolve any disputes, or cases of forgetfulness, that may occur later on. By indicating the date and time of the meeting, you can formulate a timeline for these events for a more accurate report.
2. Create a list of names of the participants who are attending the meeting and those who are unable to attend.
During board meetings, you’re likely to find a few empty seats around the table. This won’t be a problem, as long as these absences are recorded in the document. The meeting minutes should also serve as an attendance sheet to take note who were present and absent at the time. It is also possible to share the information from the meeting minutes to those who weren’t able to attend to maintain transparency within the organization.
3. State any acceptance or corrections/amendments to previous meeting minutes.
As a recap, you need to specify whether the previous report was accepted or if there were a few corrections that need to be settled accordingly.
4. Note down the decisions made regarding each item in the agenda.
Some decisions include the actions taken or those that were agreed to be taken, the next steps, voting outcomes, motions taken or rejected, items to be held over, as well as the date and time for the next meeting. This should clarify how, when, why, and by whom such decisions were implemented.You may also see minutes writing examples
Keeping track of your meeting minutes can be a lot of work, especially when you’re new to writing minutes. But with the help of these easy tips, we can make your note-taking journey a bit more bearable.
Meeting minutes typically vary according to the group or region creating the document. Some organizations even have standard templates for recording important meetings that must be followed. Staff meetings, interdepartmental meetings, and inter-agency meetings may each have a varied document style to use to record these minutes. Hence, a vital part of the pre-writing process is knowing what format is expected from the team.You may also see agenda examples
The document is generally categorized into two types:
These are the traditional type of minutes that are taken at scheduled meetings for which an agenda is prepared beforehand. This agenda is either distributed before the meeting starts or is announced by the chairperson at the beginning of the program. Here, the content of the document follows a framework set by the agenda. Due to the significance of the matter at hand, minutes are recorded by professional minute-takers or précis writers.
In many cases, departmental and team meetings do not require detailed minutes. The document simply summarizes the decisions, follow-up actions, and responsibilities taken. These minutes are distributed to everyone who attends the meeting, and sometimes to those who are interested to know about what went down but were unable to attend as well. And because these encounters do not have a defined staff meeting agenda, records are usually produced using a simple template.
The content of your meeting minutes would usually vary depending on what has been tackled as well as the duration of the program. Some meeting minutes can be long and detailed, while others can be short and to the point. Say for example, staff meetings typically last for about 15 minutes as they may only cover minor tasks and announcements that employees need to be aware of. The minutes recorded would therefore be a lot shorter than that of a 45-minute meeting. And since meeting minutes are made to present an overview of what transpired, a one-page document would do.
To learn more about meeting minutes, let’s take a look at the items below:
If it’s your first time, you might want to use a template and refer to a few examples for reference. It’s your responsibility to note down important decisions, actions, and responsibilities that were taken or assigned during the meeting. Any points that were unclear to you must be clarified before proceeding. It’s best to keep it clear, concise, and specific to avoid confusion and misinterpretation along the way.You may also see agenda examples.
Meeting minutes provide valuable information regarding the changes within the organization, along with the decisions and announcements that stakeholders may need to know about when planning for the business. The document may be used to refresh one’s memory about a particular matter and to track the progress made over a period of time.
Minutes writing is an important and often necessary task for many organizations. Not only does it communicate the facts of a meeting, but it may also provide legal protection to prove that a certain action did happen. A good meeting minutes can even map out a plan for the action items to help get the work done and later keep those who were unable to attend the meeting updated on the latest happenings within the team.
Meeting minutes are written to capture the essential information of a meeting in the most comprehensible way possible. Though preparing and taking these minutes may seem like a nerve-wracking experience, it doesn’t have to be with the help of a few techniques. Get started with the meeting minutes for your organization using these templates and examples today!