Taking Minutes

The meeting may be over, but the minute-taker’s job goes on. At the group’s next meeting, you may hear corrections to the minutes, says Joan Burge, founder and CEO of Office Dynamics. “Follow the legal requirements of your organization in correcting the minutes,” she says. “If no special requirements are indicated, then follow this procedure”:
You’re taking minutes in a meeting when the conversation suddenly goes off topic. Or two attendees begin to argue. To what extent should you capture the conversation? Joan Burge, founder and CEO of Office Dynamics, offers these tips for turning meeting conversations into a valuable road map—even when the conversation is difficult to track.
Taking minutes wasn’t getting any easier for Terri Michaels, even after years of practice. Finally, she enrolled in a workshop, and things changed. Now she uses these 10 best practices.
At Progress Energy’s quarterly “compliments and concerns” meeting, senior administrative assistant Amy Finelli uses a template for minute taking. As a result, she can quickly send out notes after the meeting “because I don’t have to figure out how to organize the topics,” she says. Here are a few more of Finelli’s power tools for meetings:
Tasked with recording minutes? Designate a “parking lot,” where all off-topic ideas can reside. It can be a real or figurative whiteboard where you list ideas as they pop up. Participants can pursue those ideas at a more appropriate time.

Nitty-gritty minute-taking

October 6, 2008 Categorized in: MeetingsTaking Minutes

“I hate taking minutes. What do I write down? How do I know what’s important?” Streamline your minute-taking by recording notes as bullet points. Distill any conversation down to its essentials.
“Write this down in the minutes,” demands a board meeting attendee, implying that his clout alone should be reason enough for you to do what he says, right or wrong. In such a situation, you could use minute-taking standards.
You won’t find many people who love meetings. That might be because attendees often feel like meetings are a waste of time. At Marilyn Halsall’s workplace, “action minutes” are part of the remedy.
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Do your office meetings suffer from a case of “all talk and no action”? You (yes, you) can fix that with this tactic.
Here’s a quick gift of tips to get back seconds, minutes, even hours. After all, we’re entering the season that’s more demanding on our time than we ever thought possible!
When just the thought of creating the official meeting minutes makes your writing hand freeze, take note: Preparation starts well before the meeting. Keep this simple checklist handy: