Taking part in discussions and recording the minutes of those discussions are two different tasks altogether. One may be adept at the first one but may feel at a loss regarding the second one. Recording minutes of a professional meeting is not considered a secretarial job any more. Any committee member could be allocated the duty of recording the minutes by rotation.
The minutes of a meeting should be recorded in a concise and comprehensive manner as it acts as a useful tool to plan the next meeting. Some crucial decisions may also be based on the minutes. It should clearly give an outline of what happened at the meeting. Here are a few pointers which will help in documenting the minutes systematically:
Pay attention to the style of writing. It should be devoid of any personal observations and the use of adjectives should be minimal.
Begin your recordings with the logistics of the meeting, i.e., time, place, attendees, speakers and the chairperson.
The initial paragraph should depict the reason for the meeting and the agenda discussed. Mention the most important points discussed. It is alright to skip introduction of the speakers. Points discussed can be written in categories like issues resolved, reports given etc.
Briefly describe the important points of each speaker including his accomplishments if any.
Describe in detail about the most pertinent aspect discussed. The minutes should not be an exact recording of every word spoken.
Do not forget to mention if any tasks were allotted during the meeting.
Write down if any decisions or conclusions were reached in the meeting.
Date, venue and agenda for the next meeting should be mentioned at the end.
Universal Charitable Trust
The thirteenth Task Force Meeting of the Universal Charitable Trust of India was held on Monday 5th July 2010 at 11 AM at the Conference Hall, Universal Charitable Trust Building, Mumbai.
Chairperson – Dr.P.Banerjee, President, Universal Charitable Trust
Special Guest – Mr. P.K.Goel, Managing Director, Universal Charitable Trust
Number of Attendees – 48
Number of Absentees- 2
1. Dr.Banerjee extended a warm welcome to all the members and specially thanked the special guest Mr. P.K.Goel for his presence.
2. Minutes of the previous meeting were read by the secretary and were then approved as a true record by Mr. Saxena.
3. Matters arising out of the last meeting:
Mr. Saxena asked Miss Rima whether the venue for the charity event had been booked. She replied in the affirmative and confirmed the time and venue for the event. She also informed the Trust that Global Bank Pvt.Ltd. had agreed to sponsor the event.
4. Mr. Sibal proposed the following strategies for advertising the event:
i) Hoardings to be displayed at twenty different locations in the city. He said that he had contacted a commercial artist who worked as a free lancer to design them.
ii) He named a few celebrities who had offered to do a few commercials advertising the event on television.
iii) He also suggested sending out fliers along with the newspapers.
5. All the suggestions given by Mr.Sibal were approved unanimously.
6. The treasurer presented the latest report on the Trust's financial standing. The treasurer also mentioned that membership fees was due from three members.
7. Mr.P.K.Goel in his speech endorsed the concept of holding the event and came up with a few suggestions regarding its theme.
8. Mr.Banerjee allocated the task of selling the tickets and passes to Mr.Verma. Mr.Verma was also asked to present his ideas in the next meeting.
9. All arrangements for the event would be finalized in the next meeting. The next meeting would be held at the same venue on Tuesday 3rd August 2010 at 11 AM.
The format and content can vary according to the nature of the meeting.