Yes, Minute Taking is a Skill! -
Published: 2020-02-20 11:27:04. Originally by: Carolyn Kessler.
Today we've chosen to highlight our Minute Taking workshop, not just because it's so popular and so effective, but also because we feel that Minute Taking is a skill that is so often overlooked. Yes, Minute Taking is a skill...


When facilitating a two-day Minute Taking workshop, I always start off asking delegates why they have chosen to attend this workshop in particular. Why they're needing to develop this skill in particular and what aspects of it they find difficult.

The answer, more often than not, is unanimous! They all disliked minute taking because they didn't feel confident in their skills. This task took up a lot of head space because they feared it so much!! They'd love to offload this duty onto someone else. They didn't believe they could ever become truly proficient scribes...

I understood completely. Employers assume anyone in an admin position can be plucked from behind their desk, given a pen and paper and dropped into a meeting to take minutes. When the minute document is completed and sent back to them, they can't understand why it isn't perfect and exactly what they wanted.

Is there any other skill out there for which you need no training and no practise? I think not!

There is a great deal of skill inherent in effective minute taking. You need to understand the theory, the type of minutes that should be produced; there are a number of different formats which dictate the amount of detail required and how the finished transcription should look. The minute taker needs to understand their mandate with regards to all aspects of producing these vital records.

It's extremely difficult to go about recording the correct level of detail, especially if you're new to the skill and/or company. How do you know which part of the discussion should be minuted and transcribed if you don't intrinsically understand the purpose of producing minutes unique to that specific situation? A document which will include everything important, but waste no space on that which isn't of value?

Are some people simply born with an ability to undertake this task?

Absolutely not! As we've ascertained, it takes knowledge and practise to hone the skill.

Interestingly enough, I often get feedback from delegates that the chairperson didn't actually know much of what they themselves had learnt on the course!

Just as it takes practise to drive a car, learn to type, compile a report, it takes knowledge and practise to become competent and lose the fear that is usually related with effective minute taking.

Join us on our next Minute Taking course and get rid of the anxiety be understanding exactly what goes into becoming proficient.

Staff Training is a South African soft skills training provider with more than 60 workshops on offer.
Email us at for more info or give us a call at 0861 996 660