Here’s another tip to improve leadership communicaiton and help to make your meetings more successful.
Make your minutes meaningful
Minutes should be easy to read and to the point. Create minutes of the meeting that help everyone to:
- Know the date of the meeting and who attended
- Know what was decided
- Specifiy follow-up actions decided at the meeting
First: make the minutes brief
I have seen minutes of meetings that went on and on with endless detail that obscured the most important decisions made at the meeting, as well as the agreements on future actions to be taken.
Second: Make meeting decisions made stand out
Use bold font, all caps and/or colored fonts to gain attention, as in the example below.
Third: Clarify actions required
Here’s what your meeting minutes might look like:
Meeting February 24, 2012
Attendance: John Smith, Barry Brown, Susan Fisher, Jim Stout, Marjorie Jones
Absent: Bill Moore, Tom White
Discussion was about expanding public relations in new ways to build more trust for our organization in the community. We decided to start this by building relationships with leaders of three community organizations.
It was agreed to execute the new expanded public relations plan by identifying nine community leaders who we will build relationships with
Identify three organizations in the community to build stronger relationships with
- Responsibility: Susan Fisher
- Helpers: John Smith, Barry Brown
- Deadline: March 9, 2012
Identify three key leaders and their contact information in each organization
- Responsibility: Jim Stout
- Organization A: John Smith
- Organization B: Marjorie Jones
- Organization C: Tom White
- Deadline: March 23, 2012
With this style of reporting, it will be obvious what was decided and what future actions need to be taken. When you use this style of reporting meeting minutes, it will be very clear to everyone what happened at the meeting. It also makes the job of taking minutes much easier for the record keeper.
What are your comments to make meetings more effective and improve your leadership communication?