Taking Meeting Minutes

Administrative Assistant Resource
May 8, 2013 — 2,066 views  
Become a Bronze Member for monthly eNewsletter, articles, and white papers.

When many meetings are held in a day, it can be difficult to remember the key points discussed in all the meetings. Employees who attend the meetings may feel that the meetings are ineffective. The purpose of meetings is to motivate employees toward productivity and efficiency. Taking meeting minutes can help to make meetings effective. 

Getting Ready for the Meeting

The first step to take meeting minutes is coming prepared for the meeting on time, so that you don’t miss any part of the discussion. You may like to take a comfortable seat, where you can listen to everything being spoken and discussed. Carry your notepad and one or more pens with you for the meeting so you can take down the important points being discussed during the meeting.

Remember, taking meeting minutes is a skill. You have to take down notes so that no important information is missed. You have to also focus on listening so that you don’t miss something important being discussed. 

Taking Notes

Taking down handwritten notes of meeting minutes is good as it won’t disturb others around you. You can take notes quickly using short words and phrases that only you can understand, even if you’re not a shorthand writing expert. Some people prefer to take meeting minutes on their laptop. But this could be irritating for others in the meeting room. The noise made by punching of laptop keys may disturbs others. Using stylus on tablet PC for taking notes may be less intrusive to others. The point to keep in mind while taking meeting minutes is that you should not disturb others.

Choose the Right Content

Structuring or organizing the content of meeting minutes makes it convenient to summarize the content later on. The date, type, and purpose of the meeting are logistical facts about the meeting that need to be written first. You can structure the content using different formats or templates. Different types of information can be separated. For example, you can note down the ‘to do’ list at the bottom as many people do. The agenda of the meeting can serve as your outline. Additionally, you can have several sub-heads under which you can fill in the content or the meeting minutes. 

Organizing Your Notes

Organize your notes within 24 hours after the meeting. The earlier you do it, the easier it will be for you to remember all key points so that nothing is missed out. The final copy of the meeting minutes should be sent to the executive officers first, who need to approve it before it can be distributed to others and filed in. A printed copy of the meeting minutes should be filed in a binder meant for that purpose. An electronic copy of the meeting minutes should also be saved on your computer. Finally, the copies may be distributed to other employees who attended the meeting through email. 

It is important to remember that one of the purposes of meetings is to bring about efficiency and productivity. But when these functions are impeded, the importance of meetings diminishes. Taking meeting minutes can improve the productivity of meetings and should be followed at all times.

Administrative Assistant Resource