Every now and then, companies hold meetings to discuss certain issues that impact the overall well-being of the organization either positively or negatively. More often than not, however, meetings can be such as a waste of time, especially if the items that are to be discussed are disorganized or if it does not have a clear set of goals to be accomplished. That is why most of the time, the meeting organizer will need a meeting agenda to lay out all the items neatly and prioritize which of them needs more attention.
Whenever a meeting is held, one of the most important elements you should pay attention to is the meeting minutes. According to an article in Wikipedia, “Minutes, also known as protocols or informally, notes, are the instant written record of a meeting or hearing”.
The main purpose of the keeping a record of the meeting minutes is to provide a description of the events that took place during the meeting. It is also used to list down the names of the attendees, as well as the statement of the issues and related responses on how to address the said issues.
Meeting Minutes and Its Important Elements
Keeping track of the meeting minutes is considered to be an extremely significant and necessary task. That is why it is very important to assign someone to keep a record of the minutes and what transpired during the meeting. However, there are a lot of methods one can use to record the meeting minutes.
The most common way is to do this is to assign a secretary to take down important notes. Initially, the notes that are recorded are in draft form and shared among the other meeting attendees so that they can personally check its accuracy and make any necessary corrections if possible.
Here is a list of the essential elements that should be included when taking minutes:
- Time the meeting started and ended
- Names of the meeting participants
- Any modifications made to the previous minutes of meeting, if possible
- Action plans to address certain issues
- Decisions made by the majority
- Summary or outline of the meeting discussion
- List of items that needs to be discussed at the next meeting
Tips on How to Effectively Take Minutes
When recording the minutes, it does not have to record every word that is spoken during the meeting. It is important to understand that it is not a stenographic record, instead, it should take note of the actions taken and highlight the important concepts that were discussed. The following are a few smart tips on how you can effectively take and record the meeting minutes easily and conveniently.
1. Meeting minutes should ALWAYS focus on these three key points:
- What was decided
- Things that have accomplished
- Things that have been agreed by the attendees
- The actions that were taken during the meeting
2. The minute format should always be consistent, and a great way to start is by using a template. The format of the meeting minutes should include the following:
- The name of the meeting committee
- The date, location, and time of the meeting
- The names of the people attending the meeting or attendance
- The name of the person assigned to take the minutes
- Agenda items and their details
- Other business
- The date of the next meeting
3. Make sure to type in the notes as soon as the meeting starts. Business experts do not recommend taking down the notes to the last minute as you are more likely to forget to record important notes or forget certain meeting parts.
4. It is important to stay objective when recording the minutes. Make sure to maintain a neutral tone and choose the wordings wisely.
5. Make sure that you fully understand the items that are to be discussed at the meeting. If you have the meeting agenda on hand, try to spend some time understanding its context prior the event. If there are certain things you do not understand, discuss it with the Committee Chair.
6. Be certain that you spend more time listening to the discussion so that it will be easier for you to summarize the details at the end of the meeting.
7. Always use past tense and record the details in the 3rd person point of view.
8. Proofread the information recorded before sharing it with the rest of the meeting attendees.
Sample Templates that You Can Use:
While there are a lot of templates that you can find on the Internet, make sure to look for something that has a professional look such as the ones provided below:
Sample Business Meeting Minutes Template
Safety Meeting Minutes Template
Non-Profit Meeting Minutes Template
Project Management Meeting Minutes Template
Shareholder Meeting Minutes Template
First Shareholder Meeting Minutes Template
Monthly Staff Meeting Minutes Template
Construction Safety Meeting Minutes Template
Free Download Meeting Minutes MS Word Format Template
Annual Board Of Directors Meeting Minutes Template
Example of Project Meeting Minutes Template
Sample Construction Meeting Minutes Template
Sample Team Meeting Minutes Template
Board Informal Minutes Template
Business Meeting Minutes Example
Council Meeting Minutes
The main purpose of recording the minutes is to effectively capture the essence of the meeting. While keeping track of the meeting minutes is highly crucial, it does not need to be a tedious task. By using our professionally designed meeting minute templates, you can effectively and conveniently take down all important notes that transpired during the meeting. Do not hesitate to download and use free meeting minute templates before you leave.