Plain Words – the Documentation and Training People
New! Book an open course. Virtual Classroom on 2 Apr 2020. Cost £395Book a private course, your choice of date and venue (office or virtual classroom)View a taster of this course
Note Taking & Minutes for Meetings: Note Taking Course Outline
Most people have to take notes or minutes of meetings occasionally as part of their work. You may also need to set agendas, manage meetings and ensure they cover the necessary content while also running to time – which can seem daunting. On this course you’ll learn simple techniques to give you a solid foundation in listening, writing and editing skills. You’ll be able to produce accurate and readable minutes and sharpen up your note taking ability.
This notes and minute taking course includes organisational hints and tips for note takers, and covers grammar, punctuation and proof-reading to make sure the final document is completely professional. We encourage you to bring a page or so of your own minutes or notes to the session so you can immediately practise some of the ideas on your own work. Delegates also share ideas about what works for them.
What you will learn during this note taking course
To create accurate and timely meeting notes you will know how to:
- Create an effective agenda that will help your meeting run smoothly
- Listen actively for relevant content and know how to maintain concentration
- Use a variety of techniques to ensure you have the best support when note taking
- Avoid common grammatical and punctuation mistakes
- Write meeting minutes in a clear, concise style and be aware of accepted conventions
- Use impartial and accurate descriptions that convey your content effectively and professionally
- Give your meeting notes that final polish before you send them
What our customers say
“I enjoyed this course very much. It was very informative and helpful, but in an engaging way. Thank you.”
DW, Lancaster City Council
“Excellent course and very enjoyable.”
“This course has helped me to identify my problem with ‘minute taking’. It has also given me the confidence to produce better formatted minutes.”
YB, Quality Improvement Agency for Lifelong Learning
How we deliver the note taking course
It is available as :
Private courses (at your premises or online virtual classrooms)
We adopt a flexible approach so that even our standard courses are tailored to your needs. Our trainers are all professional writers as well as experienced trainers. They use their judgment on the day to adjust the content and pace of the course so that delegates get the training that is right for them. This is done by:
- Discussing your requirements with you before the course
- Assessing the pre-course questionnaires
- Discussing with the delegates at the start of the course their objectives and outcomes
- Checking throughout the day that objectives are being met.
We can also further adapt the course by:
Our open courses in London
We specialise in small class sizes so that you get personal time with the tutor.
We deliver our note taking course at venues in central London, all easily accessible by public transport. All the rooms have natural daylight, independent air conditioning and free Wi-Fi.
If your journey into London means an early start, don’t worry; on your arrival you can have a light and tasty breakfast of fresh bread, pastries, cereals and fruit. Throughout the day there's an endless supply of freshly brewed coffee and speciality teas as well as chilled water, fruit and homemade snacks. Most venues also provide a hot lunch and all can cater to special dietary requirements.
Minute Taking Course Contents
1. What should good meeting minutes achieve?
- What benefits do minutes bring to your organisation?
- What sort of minutes do you need to write?
- What does it all mean? – a glossary of meeting-related terms
2. Are you listening?
- Six ways to listen powerfully
- Six things that can break your concentration, and how to avoid them
- Bad habits that make note-taking harder
When you book for the minute taking course we send you a questionnaire which we ask you to return to us before you attend the course. This enables our Trainers to assess your needs in advance.
3. Organisational hints, tips and tools for note taking and managing the meeting
- Invent your own shorthand – shortcuts when note taking in longhand and a table of useful abbreviations
- Note taker’s survival kit – the essentials to have at hand
- Importance of pre-meeting preparation
- Managing the meeting and the Chair – constructive ways to work together
- Meeting timelines – what should happen when? A stress-saving checklist
- Effectively taking notes with remote attendees
4. How’s your handwriting?
- What causes handwriting to be tiring or illegible?
- Yes, you can blame your tools! What's the best writing implement for you?
- Exercises to keep your hands limber
- Exercises to help you write more legibly
5. What makes a good agenda?
- What is a meeting agenda?
- Setting and distributing your agenda
- What to include to help you or the Chair run the meeting effectively
6. The right minutes for your meeting – layout and style
- What you should and shouldn’t include – recognising facts from chatter
- More formal meetings like AGMs – votes, proposers, seconders, elections, resolutions
- Sample minutes for formal meetings
- Minuting informal meetings
- Sample minutes for an informal meeting
- Recording decisions and actions
- Creating an action summary
7. Techniques for writing good notes or minutes
- How to word minutes – active or passive, bullets or full sentences?
- Avoid wording that indicates bias
- Plain Words’ rules for good writing
- Making Word® work for you
8. Polishing your prose
- The paragraphs, the sentences, the words
- The grammar and punctuation
- Proofing – how to see what’s really there
- Commonly confused words
- Things that make some people cross!
You’ll practise new techniques with hands-on exercises, including:
Practical ways to make your writing more concise and readable
Prioritising agenda items
Deciding what to minute and what to leave out
Word-for-word, reported speech or bullet form?
Summarising from dictation
Practising your proofreading
After the session, you will also receive two MS Word™ templates, for agendas and minutes, which you can adapt for your own use.
For the timetable of all courses see the schedule.
To reserve your places you can book a public course, book a private course, call us on +44 (0)1235 60 30 22 or email .
Plain Words Ltd
The Documentation &
tel +44 (0)1235 60 30 22
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