We all attend meetings and take notes in our different ways but the concept of meeting minutes still lingers on as part of much organization’s bureaucracy. While working with clients in the commercial and federal government sectors, it has been rare to see meeting minutes used for anything after the meeting ends. In fact, I’ve come to see them as a waste outside of being a contractual stipulation or just “the way it has always been done.”
Web workers have technology on their side when it comes to meetings because many of today’s web conferencing and online collaboration tools have features to capture the outcome of meetings. Even deftly run meetings require participant focus and meeting minutes can effectively sideline a meeting participant when they could otherwise be contributing to the discussion.
Consider status reports vs. meeting minutes. While I’ve soured on the idea of meeting minutes, I am still a believer in status reports because status reports speak to the focus of the project team member’s work and do a better job of documenting their activities.
Institute collaborative note taking. I wrote about collaborative note taking and how a team can use that to capture knowledge. With tools like Evernote and OneNote enabling collaboration, why sentence just one of your team mates to take meeting minutes? Collaborative note taking – implemented with some thought – can actually add more value than the hapless meeting scribe who may or may not even be paying attention much less know the bigger picture of the project.
If Meeting Minutes Remain a Must
Some project management methodologies and even contractual stipulations require meeting minutes to be captured it should remain in the domain of the meeting organizer/project manager to capture the results of the meeting against the agenda and goals they set while planning the meeting.
How are you doing away with meeting minutes?