Meeting Minutes Template

Meeting notes are a crucial aspect of every business gathering as they help capture the purpose of a meeting and its outcomes. It is necessary not to miss out on any important detail of the gathering as the written records enable attendees to refer back to them at any moment and also helps those who were absent at the gathering.

By having meeting minutes, all attendees can make sure they are on the same page and have a clear idea of the goals and results of a meeting. The document also helps at the next meeting with evaluating whether the goals of the previous meeting were accomplished.

Meeting minutes should be clear and concise but at the same time include all the critical points of the gathering. How to write the document and where to find a good meeting minutes template – you can find this and even more in this article.

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What Is the Purpose of Meeting Minutes?

Meeting minutes are essentially a written record of what was discussed and achieved during a meeting. In the perfect case scenario, such a document lists the tasks and goals of a meeting and helps evaluate results at the next meeting. Participants might always refer to the meeting notes and this way, not miss out on anything important. If someone hasn’t performed what they were expected to do, meeting minutes will act as a recourse and help straighten things out.

In some cases, having meeting notes might be a legal requirement. For instance, a disciplinary meeting with employees might require meeting minutes.

Some people might think that creating meeting minutes is a minor task in comparison to the importance of the affairs discussed at a meeting. However, time spent on creating the document is definitely worth the effort as failing to make proper notes might even lead to financial losses for an enterprise. For example, the attendees might end up having different remembrances from the meeting which may result in taking different actions and having different approaches to the same tasks. As a result, the deadlines might be missed and tasks, including important ones, might simply be forgotten.

What Needs to Be Included in the Document?

Meeting minutes include different types of information. The very first thing to include is the general purpose of a meeting, its topic, the place, and the date of the meeting. Then, all people who are about to participate should be listed. If some of the names are not known, it is always better to ask to avoid any confusion during the meeting when making a roll-call or in the next meeting when evaluating the outcomes of the meeting. The absence of important attendees should also be noted down as sometimes, essential decisions cannot be made without them.

Along with that, the minutes should include all the decisions made at the meeting. The best idea is to write down all the outcomes of the gathering including the actions that should be taken by certain attendees and due dates.

The last things the document should include are the date of a follow-up meeting if it was agreed on and the signatures of the members.

If you want to see how it is actually applied in the document, use our meeting minutes template. It is free!

Types of Meeting Minutes

The minutes can vary by length, members, frequency, and other parameters.

By length

  • One-page form – Basic meeting minutes. The document has only main details of the gathering and room left to insert more details of the discussion
  • Broad form – Detailed meeting minutes. The document is more specific and lists topics, discussions, results of the members’ votes, etc.

By frequency

  • Annual – They might be created by any type of business that holds a meeting once a year. This usually includes annual accounting, tax records, and other reports of a company
  • Quarterly – This document is created at a meeting that takes place every third month. It is usually used to review the results of a previous quarter and set the goals for the upcoming one
  • Monthly – Formal meeting minutes that are aimed at solving current problems, discussing strategies, organizational matters, etc.
  • Weekly – They record the results of meetings that are held on a week-to-week basis and usually address action items, roadblocks, and questions for the upcoming weeks or barriers from the last week

By members

  • Board meeting minutes – used for a meeting that is held by the board of directors of an organization and any invited guests
  • Shareholders meeting minutes – used for gatherings of shareholders (owners of an enterprise); such meetings are usually held annually and involve voting on company issues and the selection of the board of directors
  • Partnership meeting minutes – used for meetings of business partners, help record the meeting that is supposed to help partners form the common vision of how to run their businesses, evaluate what is working and what is not, etc.

If you need any meeting minutes template from the ones listed above, you can find it on our website and get a better idea of the content of this document.

Meeting minutes templates might also be used for school board meetings, church meetings, non-profit organization meetings, etc. However, when it comes to an informal meeting, formal meeting attributes such as minutes, a chairperson, or an agenda are not generally used.

How to Write Meeting Minutes? 5 Easy Steps

The document can be different based on its type. Here is what a basic meeting minutes template would include:

Prepare an agenda

First and foremost, prepare a meeting agenda. It is a document that outlines the key points of your meeting involving the topics that will be discussed, the approximate time for each of them, and who will be speaking. A meeting agenda will help each of the meeting attendees follow the outline and know what to expect from the gathering.

List the attendees

The other function of meeting minutes is listing the attendees of the meeting. The best way to check the present participants is to make a roll call, and the names should be noted down in the minutes.

Note down briefly all that has been discussed

Meeting minutes serve as a record of bullets for every topic that was raised during the attendees’ gathering. Only the main points should be outlined in the document. If there is some sort of argument at the meeting, it is crucial to note down the arguments of both sides in the minutes.

Some questions at a meeting might require a voting procedure. If it takes place, the results of voting should be put in the minutes. The names of the voters might be included as well unless the voting is anonymous.

Approve and sign

The last thing to do with meeting minutes is to get them approved by the chairperson. The latter will review the document and possibly remove the details that shouldn’t be listed in the meeting minutes. Once the document is signed, it might be distributed to the participants of the meeting.

How to Fill out a Formal Meeting Minutes?

Most meeting minutes templates normally include the following information:

Step 1

The first thing to write in the document is the meeting details. Tell who is chosen to be the meeting facilitator (a person who acts as a leader and navigator helping achieve meeting goals) and the secretary (a person who maintains the records of the meeting). Write the date and time of the meeting and if it is held online, the URL which will allow participants to join the gathering.

Step 2

The next section of the meeting minutes template is called Attendees and Absences. It should list all the individuals present at the meeting and the ones who are absent.

Step 3

Now, it is time to write down the topics of the meeting. They might include important business affairs as well as out-of-work activities, for example, corporate gatherings. There is no need to include every single detail of the topics discussed at the meeting. If any voting took place, the results should be written down as well.

Step 4

If the meeting has adjourned, now it is high time for the signatures and the print names of the secretary and the meeting facilitator to be included.

The physical signature is not necessarily required. The attendees can use an electronic signature in case the meeting is held online.

Meeting minutes templates can be different based on the type of company, length, members, etc. This is why you must know what exact type you need to get a proper meeting minutes template.

If you want to find a good meeting minutes template to get a better idea of what the document should look like, use the one on our website. The meeting minutes template is easy to download and customize for your own needs.

Published: Jan 21, 2021