Learn to write great meeting minutes that capture all the key points

Writing meeting minutes can be a valuable skill that will benefit your work life, regardless of whether you are the designated note-taker or simply taking notes for your knowledge. Although the term minutes can be misleading as it refers to actual minute-to-minute collections, the most important details to include are steps, actions, and discussions. These minutes can be used to help remind employees or you of your time frames and tasks.

For meeting minutes, the starting point is to list the essential details such as the date and time, location, facilitator name, key topics, and end time. To remember who spoke on what topic and at what time, the date and topic are important. This allows you to quickly find details by referring to the notes.

A meeting outline is a good idea. It will help you plan and have clear space for notes and discussion. Instead of leaving too much space for notes, it is better to have enough. It is also a good idea to keep a list of all those who are attending the meeting and mark them as "attended" when they arrive. Abbreviations can be used to clearly identify who spoke and when.

Do not try to remember every detail, but instead focus on summarizing the key points. It can be difficult to find the key points later if you write too much. You don't have to worry about the unimportant. You can take notes however you prefer, using pen and paper, a notebook, or a computer. If you are unsure about something, ask for clarification. This will help you take better notes.

The best time to go over or to collect meeting minutes is right after the meeting is adjourned. The closer time frames to the actual meeting means the more honest and reflective the notes will be. Go over your outline again and add any notes or points that you failed to note earlier. You should make sure you include all important details, including a summary or quick explanation.

Then you should edit the notes you have further by making sure it is easy for anyone to understand and only have significant points. By the end of the editing, the document should clearly point out what was accomplished, what decisions were made and what actions were agreed upon.