Note Taking & Minutes for Meetings: Note Taking Course
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 a one-day private tutor-led course at your premises or a one-day open course in London.
Private courses at your premises
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 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.