How to write meeting minutes for board of directors and other participants

By Kishana Citadelle
Published: 8/20/21
how-to backgroundHow to write meeting minutes for board of directors and other participants

Many people attend meetings. Because countless things are and can be said in a meeting, whether it is a project meeting, an HR meeting etc., it can be hard to keep an official record of just word of mouth.

So, in order to avoid confusions or the circulation of misinformation, meeting minutes writing was created.

Though, its name may give you the false impression that you need to write down every minute of everything that was said, it is actually not the case.

Where does the name come from, then? It is possible for minutes to have been derived from the Latin phrase “minuta scriptura” (literally "small writing") which means "rough notes”.

Therefore, minute meeting is notes of the main information and points of the meeting. But, how to write minutes of meeting?

What is minute writing?

It is a written record of important information said during a meeting. Meeting minutes are useful to any kind of group within a company, even your board of director members’ meetings.

Minutes meeting notes are usually meant to inform the people and if so, those of that did not get to attend the meeting, about conversations, decisions made and information shared. And that’s not all, but it is used as a meeting’s track record.

In fact, when it comes to reviewing the same topic in future meetings, this tool can avoid any possible misunderstanding. Minutes meeting notes are effective in the long-term because of, again, record tracking.

And, meeting minutes is a very beneficial document for the board members as it is an information indicator for who will do what as well as when it should be executed.

Note that there are many types of minutes of meeting, depending on the meeting, of course. Some require specific drafting.

For example, when it comes to public administration meetings. The formalism and presentation of meeting minutes notes are stricter. So, how to write minutes of meeting, you ask? Look no further than below.

How to write minutes of meeting

Note that, minutes of meeting notes can only be as good as the planning of the meeting.

Here are the steps to take as the leader:

  • Start with pre-planning as it leads to a smooth sailing meeting, with information being correctly distributed among the staff. The meeting of minutes notes will be easier for whoever has to write them.
  • Create a list of attendees. Who and which team will most be useful for that particular meeting?
  • Make sure the agenda item is given, if possible, a few days in advance. This will help your co-workers prepare and feel confident participating the day of, because they will have researched and practiced for it.
  • Is every item to be discussed possible within the timeframe of the meeting? Otherwise, the minutes of meeting writer will feel like he or she has to rush to write down something because of the incoherence of the meeting whereas, if the agenda items were carefully thought out, he or she could have used them as guidelines.

As a note taker:

  • Create the outline of your meeting minutes notes with the help of pre-planned plans (agenda items).
  • Check for attendees and absentees from the list of participants.
  • Inquire by asking for clarification of information being said during the meeting. You do not want your minutes of meeting notes to be incomprehensible.
  • With the permission of everyone present, prepare to record if things are moving along too quickly and there is no time for clarification. So have, if allowed, your electronic device(s) with you.
  • Be concise in your minutes of meeting, yet clear with the information taken down, as others will need to read it and understand it too. Write the minutes of meeting notes for others to read, not only you.

What minutes of meeting should include

Once you feel like you have set everything such as agenda items in motion, you can now move on to the next step.

Your minutes of meeting writing should include:

  • The date, time, and place of the meeting. This is self-explanatory, so, no need to elaborate on this. Everyone needs to know where and when to show up for a meeting, for it to actually happen.
  • A list of the meeting participants. So that everyone is aware of who will attend. It could probably be useful to know who did not attend the last one. Because, as I have mentioned, minutes of meeting could be used as a starting point. So, you can recap as well as assign everyone with the roles and actions they will have to partake in. It could avoid over talking and cutting someone off.
  • The purpose of the meeting, is pretty obvious. You must be informed of why there is a meeting and what topic and items you want to review
  • Agenda items: as I previously said, so you know what you should talk about in order for conversations not to deviate from schedule, so that, you don’t leave without ever mentioning what you actually gathered for. It should also include decisions to be made during the meeting.
  • The date, time and location for the next meeting: so that everyone knows which tasks need working on and when to get it done by for the meeting.
  • Important documents used in the meeting that should be included in your minute meeting notes.

Why should you write minutes of meeting?

The purpose of minutes of meeting

Minutes of meeting is important when it comes to the investigation of the work life. It is a record which can determine whether everyone is respected and everything is being done ethically.

Likewise, minutes of meeting is a document which the Human Resources department could use to examine if there was any misconduct or plain disrespect within the organization and take action, if need be.

And if, due diligence ever shows up at your door step, then you have got your documented minute meeting track record to avoid a track record. No one wants that. So, it provides legal protection.

The key points of meetings minutes

Here are the key points of minutes meeting:

  • They record the board and group’s decisions and actions.
  • Minutes of meeting reminds people of who needs to do what, so that all the information said, doesn’t get lost.
  • Minutes of meeting informs you and the board of deadlines.
  • It can be used as a starting point for the next meeting
  • It is beneficial for people who were/ are absent in decision-making meetings but can follow what to do based off of the minutes of meeting notes

The importance for future meetings

Once minutes of meeting becomes a central part of your meetings, you could directly go to the record of what needs to be reviewed and be organized. And it is determined that if you make minute meetings a big part of your meetings, you can seek out your meeting agenda items ahead of time.

There will be no more never-ending meetings, well, hopefully not too many of them, but quicker ones. People will go in, knowing what they need to talk about or what actions need to come into play. It can track what was said for the attendees and provide information for the absentees.

Sometimes, meetings can feel so crowded, exhausting, with much information being passed around, that it can be hard to see the end. If people are lucky enough to have an easy sailing meeting, that is great but, in reality, meetings can be filled with questions and disagreements.

Which is why minutes of meeting is the best at taking a step back once the meeting is over. You get to re-read the notes of the most important points in the minutes of meeting, giving you a clear picture of the meeting’s outcome.

What are the types (formats) and templates of minutes of meeting?

The type of formats coordinating with meetings

You have formal meetings which are the most important as they concern big decision-making. Of course, the language used is formal and no information should be omitted.

And then there is informal, which are recaps of the main meeting, recessing information that was potentially dismissed or giving updates on, whether tasks are being completed or not. In addition, during this meeting, new projects can be acquired to meeting members.

Minutes meeting can be written on Word, Excel, Google Docs, Google Ads

They have to coincide with the meeting you’re having of course, well it is better.

Therefore, the choices of templates are endless.

Meeting minutes templates exist for weekly, project meetings, agile, board, HR meetings and more. What you would need to do is pick a template, customize it with the information of your company and the objective of the meeting, and then use it when the day arrives.

But mainly, the templates correspond to the type of meeting.

For example, one of a formal meeting, minutes meeting note would include:

  • A heading
  • The name of your company and its department
  • The Date
  • A call to order, basically noting when, where, the meeting’s organizer (e.g, the project manager, chairperson, etc.) calls for the meeting attendees to focus or refocus and be serious about the topic at hand
  • A roll call: the meeting’s secretary conducts a roll call of the participants and ascertains the attendees and the absentees
  • Approving of meeting minutes from the last meeting. The meeting secretary read the minutes of meeting and if it is fine, approves of it. And, the meeting can proceed.
  • Open issues: That is where you get into the problems that have come up. Noting that to finish every topic discussion with a summary so, that everything is clear on paper as well as in person because this is your record of the meeting.
  • New business: It concerns any new ventures, the company might want to take on. Discussions and information of it are being exchanged, with a summary in the end to clarify all that was said during the meeting.
  • Then comes the adjournment of the meeting where the meeting organizer states the meeting has come to an end and where the note taker writes it down minutes of the meeting, as well.
  • Lastly, name of the submitter of the minutes of meeting
  • Minutes approved by: Name

For informal, you have more liberty. The template usually require less information.

And can be of this form:

  • A heading
  • The meeting attendees
  • The date
  • The meeting objective: the main subject of the meeting
  • Talking points of new issues that may have arisen, of project(s) advancement
  • New action items: so new assignment of projects to accomplish with given dates and name of the task(s) boss.

Examples of meeting minutes format templates

And if the decision of minutes of meeting templates is a bit difficult, then, Appvizer has got you covered. We offer a template that you can easily download. You weren’t expecting that, huh? You should come to by now. What a lifesaver, Appvizer is. The template is available below:

Appvizer’s minutes meeting’s model

Click on the link, and you will be directed to the model.

You just have to fill it in with your company’s information, and you are good to go. The design and example of items are already in the model.

It is simple and easy to modify

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