So, you’ve just come out of the weekly/monthly/quarterly general meeting of your organization or not-for-profit. What is next?
Herein lies one big issue. Everyone in that meeting will either be required to undertake actions from the meeting, or you have just compiled a list of notes that are filed away, never to become exposed again.
During the meeting, actions should be assigned to people within the meeting. How can you assist, as the minute taker?
- As soon as possible post-meeting (within 24 hours), arrange concise notes, which clearly show WHO is responsible for an action. Ensure that any relevant points about each resolution are included
- In your notes, include the date, time, and location of the meeting, attendees (include apologies), topics discussed, and all decisions made. Ensure people understand clearly who is allocated to action which resolutions and action items.
- The minutes (or summary) should include the topic/s discussed, the resolution, a timeline, if necessary, what actions are to be undertaken, and who is assigned to complete.
- Ensure you have your draft minutes/summary typed up and approved within the timelines given to you so that distribution to key personnel is timely.
- If appropriate, provide a follow-up email/memo to each assigned person with a summary of the areas they have been assigned. You may like to provide this in between meetings, as a way of improving communication, but also to encourage them. Often, good managers, will have completed the assigned tasks, or have them in progress, and a follow-up message can be edifying as they read and can say, yes, this is completed and ready for the next meeting.
- When preparing the next meeting agenda, you may choose to include a list from the previous meeting to check through what has been completed from the last meeting.
If there is anything I have learned over 30 years of writing minutes, it is communication is key to ensuring all actions/resolutions are followed up promptly.
What actions can you undertake to improve the timeliness of information reaching assigned personnel in your workplace?