Minute and note-taking

Minute and note-taking – overview

The aim of this thoroughly practical half-day workshop is to provide participants with an understanding of the purpose of meetings and how to take appropriate concise minutes or notes that will be easy to read back and form an accurate record of a meeting.

The programme covers the procedural aspects of minute and note taking, the use and importance of minutes and notes, as well as practical skills training. It helps improve skills in listening and summarising as well as accurate recording and formatting. This ensures that key decisions and actions can be identified and extracted.

The techniques discussed are applicable to any formal meeting.

Full details below or download course outline.

Learning objectives

This programme will help participants:

    • Identify the role and responsibilities of the minute taker
    • Select appropriate facts and record them accurately
    • Confidently interject for clarity
    • Use different layouts in the style, structure and format required for different types of meeting

    Above all, it is a golden opportunity to learn and practise techniques for writing clear and accurate minutes.

Who should attend?

Anyone responsible for taking minutes and notes of formal meetings where accurate records are required (eg, local authority council and committee meetings, workplace investigations, etc).

Course format

An interactive half-day workshop style course that balances input with participant discussion and activities. Time is set aside to review learning and identify actions. Exercises and plans produced will relate to real life meetings that participants are involved in.

Expert trainer

Amanda is a qualified and experienced learning and development practitioner who specialises in coaching and training groups and teams in the public sector. She has professional qualifications in training, organisational development, HR and coaching and mentoring skills. She is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and Licentiate Fellow of the Institute for Training and Occupational Learning. She runs a small training and coaching business based in Buckinghamshire and prior to this co-owned a company that delivered training contracts to local and central government.

Amanda has a background of senior and leadership roles in the public and not for profit sectors, including an Assistant Directorship for a national charity with responsibility for strategic and operational training and capacity building programmes. While working for an Inner London Borough in a senior corporate role Amanda worked with elected members directly and also delivered regular training for elected members on chairing public meetings.

Amanda delivers courses on working in a political environment for local authorities, most recently for Essex County Council and Central Bedfordshire Council. Her portfolio also extends to helping people gain skills and knowledge in a wide variety of soft skills including presentation skills, credible communication, personal effectiveness, assertiveness, managing meetings, chairing and committee skills, facilitation skills, managing time, inter alia. Amanda’s style is characterised by maximising participation and using creative and interactive approaches to the learning experience, keeping participants engaged and enthused, making learning enjoyable and practical. She makes sure all learning styles are catered for and that time is given to reflection and action planning, so that learning is transferred back into the work place and participants can apply their new knowledge and skills in practice.

Minute and note-taking – course outline

1 Introduction

  • Overview of the programme, objectives and timings, housekeeping
  • Introductions and personal learning aims
  • The use and importance of minutes
  • Scope of participants’ responsibilities and the type of notes and minutes they take

2 Preparing minutes

  • Issues
  • Target audience
  • Establishing a relationship with the chair
  • Inspiring confidence within a meeting

3 Critical skills

  • Listening and summarising
    • – Barriers to listening
    • – Active listening
  • Skills practice: individual and small group exercises

4 Effective note-taking 1

  • Developing a short-hand
  • From abbreviations to mind-mapping
  • How to clarify what has been said
  • Group and individual exercise
  • Using sample layouts
  • Feedback

5 Effective note-taking 2

  • Structured note-taking
  • Identifying key points
  • Ensuring you have all that you need
  • Small group exercise
  • Selecting what is appropriate:
  • – Style
    – Language
    – Structure

6 Conclusion

  • Review of learning and feedback
  • Summarising top tips
  • Evaluation and action planning