Structure Note Taking for Better Comprehension and Recall

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During the last half of 2023, we shared a number of blogs on how to run meetings more efficiently and effectively.  We’re thrilled to hear that you are making more productive use of time for meeting by:

  • Using pre-meeting agendas to reduce the time spent in meetings to discuss each item – and to provide more time for those issues that deserve more attention. 
  • Reducing time set aside for meetings so people can use the time more productively.

We thought we’d share another set of ideas to help you more.

The mindset you use when you enter a meeting – active or passive – will affect how much you get from the meeting. If you start with a disciplined mindset to focus on what’s important, you will benefit the most. For distance, you can build for yourself a template that allows you to categorize information based on important criteria for both comprehension and recall. Leigh Espy, in Bad Meetings Happen to Good People, suggests a template with four headings that can guide the information being discussed and gleaned for each meeting: 

  • Risks
  • Actions
  • Issues
  • Decisions

While these four may not be best for you, you can tailor the categorizations to address the common threads of your meetings. When in doubt over the importance of an issue – ask!  Gaining clarity at the meeting increases both comprehension and recall – and that will increase your time available for acting on the issues you discussed!

Share with us your meeting-related challenges so we can help you increase your productivity and opportunity for more growth.