February 22, 2024

How to take meeting minutes

author: Administrative clerk

I have a friend, let’s call her Amy, who is a newbie in the workplace who has just entered an administrative position. Two days ago, she said this to me:
Not long after she joined the company, the company held a discussion meeting. After the meeting, the leader told Amy, please sort out the meeting minutes.
In order to leave a good impression on the leader, Amy worked hard and typed on the computer for most of the night, sorted out 10,000 words and sent it to the leader.
But the leader didn't buy it, and after ten minutes he replied to Amy: "Amy, you are writing nonsense!"
Meetings are a pitfall that professionals cannot avoid.
Meeting minutes are a pitfall that administrators cannot avoid.
Meetings are the most common form of work communication, used to discuss work ideas, exchange work information, and clarify work arrangements.
The quality of meeting minutes will directly affect the impression of administrators in the minds of leaders. A good meeting record can demonstrate the professional qualities of administrative personnel: such as summarizing and refining abilities, capturing and identifying abilities, logical thinking abilities...
So how can we make meeting minutes more efficient? You can try the following two methods:

Mind mapping

First, the purpose of the meeting must be clearly defined.
Generally speaking, most meetings have the following purposes.
  1. Convey the instructions and spirit of superiors;
  2. Solve a practical problem;
  3. Assign certain tasks to subordinates. For this type of meeting, you can prepare a mind map template like this in advance and use it to take minutes during the meeting.
The purpose of mind mapping is to facilitate the organization of meetings and help record meeting information efficiently. Secondly, master the scientific method:
  1. Record the basic information of the meeting for easy reference later. Such as the theme of the meeting, the time of the meeting, the location of the meeting, etc.
  2. Record the issues to be solved in the meeting, clarify the fundamental purpose of the meeting, and prevent the records from being indifferent.
  3. Record the speeches of important people. Record the main content, important points, suggestions and other key contents of the "protagonist".
  4. Record the final results of the meeting and unresolved issues.
In fact, as a meeting note taker, you should always remember to stand in the perspective of a third party, keep an eye on the problems that need to be solved before the meeting, and clearly record the solutions to the problems. Because this is what the leader cares about most, and it is also the original intention of requiring meeting minutes.

3W recording method

Eiichiro Misaki, a famous Japanese time management writer, proposed the "3W" meeting recording method. The so-called 3Ws are When, Who and What. This method not only ensures that important information from the meeting is not missed, but also clarifies the speaker's logic.

Here are some examples:

  • A. Andy submitted the product promotion plan before leaving get off work today;
  • B. Bob submits the results of the user survey before getting off work this weekend
  • C. Clyne will complete the final cover design of the product packaging by the end of next week...

In this way, the recorded meeting content is clear and easy to understand, which significantly improves the effect of meeting records.

After clarifying the scientific meeting recording method, you need to coordinate and practice it during the meeting.


First: Meeting preparation stage

1. Understand the meeting information.

For example, the purpose of the meeting, the time of the meeting, who hosted it, who attended, information about the last meeting, etc.

2. Write down the recording framework.

Fully understand the content of the meeting and accurately grasp the key points of the meeting.

3. Write the meeting topic in advance


Second: Meeting in progress

1. Check the list of participants

When participating in a meeting, you should take out the previously prepared list and check it one by one, and make notes for absentees and temporary additions. Paying attention to the views of authorities or representatives is one of the basic principles for recording meeting minutes.

2. Record the outline of discussions and decisions made during the meeting.

3. If a large number of people are involved, the departments participating in the meeting can be clearly stated if necessary.


Third: The meeting ends

1. Review your notes while the iron is hot, and ask relevant personnel for supplementary information as soon as possible if you are unclear.

2. According to the company's standard template or writing habits, organize the notes into a concise and clear document.

3. It should be noted that after making meeting minutes, try to send memos to everyone by email. It is best to store them locally in EXCEL format to facilitate the execution of later tasks.

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