Recording meetings (minute taking)
Meetings and decision making
Most meetings boards and committees use minutes to record conversation, discussion and decisions. requires ‘minutes of all proceedings at meetings of directors to be recorded’ and retained for a minimum of 10 years. Once approved and signed, the minutes are evidence of the proceedings in the meeting.
, summarised below, is a helpful resource.
Effective minute taking
Good minute taking is an art. The task of writing up minutes, creating a concise, succinct, accurate account of key meeting outcomes can take as long, if not longer, as a meeting itself.
No one-size-fits-all approach can be adopted for minute taking. Context is always important and each chair and each board will have their own preference for minuting style. It is up to each individual organisation to decide how best its meetings should be recorded.
The purpose of minutes is to provide an accurate, impartial and balanced internal record of the business transacted at a meeting. The degree of detail recorded will depend to a large extent on the needs of the organisation, the sector in which it operates and the requirements of any regulator, and on the working practices of the chair, the board and the company secretary or other governance lead. The minutes should be clear, concise and free from any ambiguity as they will serve as a source of contemporaneous evidence in any judicial or regulatory proceedings.
Minutes may also be used to demonstrate that the directors or trustees have fulfilled their statutory duties, in particular by evidencing due diligence in decision making and appropriate challenge in order to hold the executive to account, and by showing that issues of risk and stakeholder impact have been properly considered. To an increasing degree, minutes are bei