Each one of us invests our time and attention in meetings. We show up. listen, offer advice when we can, and take notes. But when the meeting is over, do we truly know how to write a report of a meeting held in a way that is clear and actionable?
There are so many who can benefit from a meeting report or recap such as:
Attendees who came to the meeting may be unclear on the final decisions and how to act upon them.
Guests who couldn’t make it and would like to understand the discussion and decisions and how it impacts their work.
Managers or leaders of related departments that were not invited to the meeting but may be impacted by decisions and outcomes.
Clients who would benefit from a client meeting report that helps build confidence that they were heard and what the next steps will be.
Here are some different ways to ensure the information discussed in the meeting is useful beyond the meeting.
Use a Template
Using a simple meeting minutes template or informal meeting minutes template is a great way to establish professional minutes of meeting format that helps create a consistent minutes of meeting template with action items for sharing when the meeting it is used for is complete. For example, you can create a staff meeting minutes sample and build it into a meeting minutes template document, meeting minutes template Excel, meeting minutes template Google docs, or even a meeting minutes template Word. Or even better, use a meeting tool like Docket where you can create templates that you can share with your team.
Take Good Notes
One way to help simplify the recaps and reports after the meeting is to have good notes taken during the meeting. Most of us did not learn how to write minutes of meeting in school so it should not be expected that everyone is good or consistent in this area. While you could share how to write minutes of a meeting examples or minutes of meeting sample with your team, reviewing their notes and discussing the need for further clarity or detail before the meeting is over can help to ensure the notes are ready for use by the end of the meeting. The alternative is rewriting them yourself which takes additional time with the potential for lost context. Don’t leave the meeting until there are sufficiently documented results including decisions, tasks, and due dates, in minutes of meeting draft.
Tailor For The Audience
Now that you have specific decisions, tasks, and next steps ready to use, it is time to decide what is appropriate for the audience to receive in a memorandum of the meeting. Here are a few suggestions and considerations:
For those who attended the meeting, it makes sense that they receive a copy of the entire meeting but is there anything specific you want them to remember or take action on? For example, if you assigned a task to a department or person, make sure the meeting summary report sample you are putting together brings attention to those items which require more work.
For those who were invited but did not get to attend the meeting, consider they may need a little more context to the problem and the final decisions made, especially if it creates any changes or work for the individual or the team they represent.
For those who were not included in the meeting but should be aware of the outcomes, this audience, like leadership or department managers, more than likely doesn’t need the full minutes of meeting email sample but rather a high-level problem statement, decision, and next steps in their meeting report format.
For clients who attended the meeting, the meeting report sample format can be slimmed down from the full conversation to making sure they know you understand the need or the problem and have a plan in place that can be shared as the next steps with owners and deadlines for accountability.
While this sounds like a lot of work, it doesn’t have to be. You don’t have to know how to write a meeting report sample or how to write a report after a meeting sample. Using a meeting tool like Docket to identify key takeaways and with the ability to customize the messaging in a free meeting report template like a business meeting report example or a business meeting report sample, can simplify this process meeting to meeting.
Share With Others
Once you have decided what each audience should see, it is time to disseminate the information as soon after the meeting is over as possible. You can do this based on the audience and use a variety of options such as:
- client meeting report format
- daily meeting report format
- free conference report template
- meeting report sample PDF, meeting report template Excel, or meeting report template Word
- a meeting tool like Docket with built-in templates and recaps
Taking the time to use a template for consistency, taking good notes for memory, and tailoring the message and view for each guest can help ensure clarity and alignment and create a solid path to progress for the challenges met in each of your meetings.