Meetings are an inexorable part of any business where you have more than a few dozen people working together. Bringing people together to organize is key to successful business decisions, but a meeting itself is not enough to guarantee progress. Meeting minutes are essentially a summary of everything brought up during the meeting, and their value goes far beyond chronicle obligation. When you incorporate minute-taking into your next business meeting, you are set to get some substantial benefits, some of which you probably don’t expect. It can take a lot of time to perfect the art of taking minutes, and this time can be saved by engaging professional minute-taking services, such as those offered by Global Lingo.
1. A reference sheet
The first and most obvious advantage granted by meeting minutes is the reference value. Memory is faulty and often clouded by emotion, so a fact-based summary of your meeting will serve as a great catch-up guide for anyone who missed the meeting, those who did not pay full attention, and those whose recollections do not accurately represent what actually took place. As long as workers agree that the summary was accurate, it will serve as a major reference point for anyone looking back at the meeting.
Not all businesses are aware of this, but meeting minutes serve as official documentation in many countries. This means that any events and conversations transcribed in the meeting become part of official records and can serve a major role not only in high-level internal discussions, but also in any legal action and government inquiry into your business. By documenting as many details as possible, you are solidifying facts and removing possible avenues of attack for anyone looking to go on the offense against your company or staff.
3. Future roadmap
Emails from management about the future of the company and certain initiatives can certainly be inspiring, but they tend to be one-sided and not representative of all views in the company. Meeting minutes do a much better job of this, documenting where everyone stands and typically establishing a roadmap for future objectives and endeavors. When many people are brought into the equation and you can actually see the gist of what they said during the meeting, you get a much bigger picture of the direction that the business is moving in.
Meeting minutes are strictly fact-based and on-the-record, so you can get an accurate summary of what was said, without hyperbole and broad terms. Thus, they offer an excellent opportunity to glean exact information about the stances and statements of meeting participants.
5. Measuring progress
Apart from setting goals for the future, this instrument also grants a great retrospective for achieved progress. A detailed summary will provide new information about the results of the year/quarter/month/week, as well as how the results stack up to the expectations and requirements of the business. If this data is presented in broad terms or simplified in unofficial memos and emails, meeting minutes can provide a much better progress-meter.