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Our agendas are filled with meetings, sometimes more than we like to. But since you invariably arrive at your meetings armed with The Ultimate Notebook, you should make the most out of it. That's why we came up with 6 steps to take for writing better meeting notes and meeting minutes.
First of all, let's explain the difference between meeting notes and meeting minutes. Meeting notes are the notes you take in your Ultimate Notebook, everything you jot down in your proper elegant handwriting. These notes are personal and for your eyes only. These can easily be written in The Ultimate Notebook by hand.
Meeting minutes are written according to a parliamentary procedure and they only contain the essential information of the topics discussed in the meeting. The meeting notes are public and should be sent to everyone involved after the meeting. Thus, these should be made on a digital asset like a laptop.
Now you know the difference between notes and minutes, let's dive right into the tips!
Since meeting minutes should be sent according to the same procedure, you need a clear structure. Use the same structure for your notes for an easy transfer. Take a head start by outlining that structure in your Ultimate Notebook before the meeting starts. You can include the following items:
Most of the time, meetings are scheduled way ahead which is great. Because then you'll be able to prepare the meeting so you can take your notes more effectively. You can prepare your notebook for the meeting like this:
Imagine this: you enter the meeting perfectly well prepared, you created your structure and you are confident. Until all of a sudden you realize: "Damn, I don't know how to take effective meeting notes."
Don't worry, we'll guide you through it! Have a look at these tips and tricks:
Journalists really master jotting down notes. Of course, they have to. However, they always got a plan B. They record their interviews for two reasons.
First, they do it so they can fill in the blanks if the interviewee speaks too fast and they can't hold up so afterward they can fill in the gap. Secondly, they do it to quote the interviewee correctly.
For us, meeting note-takers, that first reason is the most important. You can record the meeting to have a fallback for when you weren't able to keep up with the high pace or if you fell asleep for a couple of seconds.
What you can do as well is to ask for more explanation or a repetition of what just has been said. That way, not only will you have the time to write down what you missed, but the conversation will be thought-through deeper and every attendee will understand the topic better.
Perfect, you've got your meeting notes all written down in your Ultimate Notebook. Now you want to turn your offline keywords into clear digital meeting minutes for everyone. Here are some tips on how to write clear meeting minutes:
The very last part is making sure your meetings are sent to everyone who needs to see them. You can do this in various ways.
For example, you send an email to everyone who needs to access the meeting minutes. You can either just use the meeting minutes as the mail itself or add it as an attachment.
Be sure to order them in a folder by category or date so they'll be easy to retrieve.
Are you more confident to take meeting notes and send out meeting minutes now? Become even more confident with The Ultimate Notebook!
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