Weekend Poll: Time to talk about minutes

You’re creating permanent, official records

Minutes represent your organisation’s history. Once approved, your minutes become official records of actions and decisions. No pressure, right? That’s why you’re compensated, and it’s also one of the reasons a number of assistants feel the pressure when it comes to this aspect of the role.

Practices have evolved

… and so you need to ensure that your practices reflect current standards. This becomes particularly important for long-term assistants. Many of you reading this will have begun your careers when there was an entirely different approach as to what should and shouldn’t be recorded.

Different execs or meeting chairs have different expectations

… and, while there are standards to which you want to adhere, it’s not uncommon for those who record meetings chaired by different leaders to find themselves adapting to individual style preferences for each committee or body.

We’ll take a look at this, as well as how much of your time you spend on this aspect of the job and how you record minutes.

All this, of course, leads to the topic of my latest Weekend Poll:


All the hours you spend on minutes

Please take a couple of minutes to complete the poll below.

6 Comments on “Weekend Poll: Time to talk about minutes

  1. I clicked shorthand for the method of recording as there was no other relevant option. I record mine in long hand!

    Re training, although I don’t need training in how to record minutes, I do need training in what my employer calls ‘clerking’ duties from agenda setting to writing papers – it’s not only minutes taking for us.

    • Thanks, Liza, for your note. I’ve just added longhand as a response option. Once results are tabulated, I’ll make an adjustment to reverse one entry from shortland and add one to longhand so that my report reflects intent.

      You and your employer are right in that there’s much more to meetings and the role in general than minutes. That’s why, although my training presentations on minutes are particularly popular, I also have training presentations such as “Strategies for Sucessful Meetings” and “Writing for Career Success: Business Writing Skills” (https://exceptionalea.com/speaking-engagements/).

      It’s good to hear from you, and I’ll look forward to the next time we meet. Will you be in Glasgow for next year’s EPAA Fellow Training Day?

      • Similar – I selected shorthand but I actually use speedwriting techniques.

      • Thanks, Hannah, for letting me know.

        As with Liza, I’ll make the adjustment in tabulating results and have just added speedwriting to the options. Have a great week.

  2. I am no longer working so I can’t really answer the above questions, but when I was, I absolutely hated taking minutes. I was once or twice sent into a room full of people and I didn’t know who they were, where they worked or what they did. How can you take minutes under these conditions?

    • I hope those situations you describe were isolated, as they’re not ideal. Thanks for reading my site.

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