Meetings are essential in seeking new opportunities, solving problems, communicating ideas, and a whole lot more. Sometimes, because there is a need to discuss all of the meeting agenda, not every member of the meeting can grasp every detail. In that case, the goal of connecting with people within an organization might not push through. Every meeting requires a minute taker who will note down the pieces of information. Even a charity meeting needs it too. So, to help the taker with the task, he or she should know how to write the minutes of the meeting. If you want to know more about writing minutes and its benefits, continue reading the article. Let us take you in-depth about the subject.
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What Is a Minutes of the Meeting?
A meeting minutes, also known as minutes of the meeting, is a note recorded at the same time the meeting was being held. This is also a document directly written during the hearing of the discussion. Moreover, minutes define the events while members are conducting the meeting and may provide a list of the attendees, agenda of the meeting, related discussions for the agenda, and a summary of the discussions.
The purpose of the meeting minutes is to provide an organization with a written record for future references. The minutes of the meeting are not a transcript or a verbatim report unless a meeting presents written original materials to be written down by the minute taker or the organization requires it. In other words, minutes contain what happened in the meeting and not what the members said. In fact, organizations have different minutes format depending on their standards. Despite that, minutes are essential for legal documentations. It is a confidential file for most businesses because it contains the necessary internal discussion that directly affects the organization.
Charity Meeting Minutes: How Is It Important?
A charity is an organization with good intentions, along with long-term and short-term goals. When it comes to measuring goals, facts should be recorded during discussions and member meetings. All these help pique the progress of the organization as it decides for its future. With meeting minutes, a charity can make a plan of action for the team and the organization. Because of this, the what, when, where, who, and how of the charity will be clarified. This can even help in the legal protection of the organization by representing the actions of the members.
How to Write the Minutes of Meeting
Some organizations remain faithful to the benefits of conducting meetings amidst its disadvantages. According to the Harvard University Business Review, out of 182 senior managers, some 65% said that meetings hinder them from finishing their work, and 71% confessed that they consider meetings as unproductive and inefficient. Plus, 64% of the respondent said meetings cost deep thinking, and 62% agreed that meetings miss the opportunities to bring members closed to each other. Still, writing down the minutes remains essential for charities as it continues to conduct meetings. Here are some steps to help you format your minutes of the meeting. More on this below:
1. Prepare Before the Meeting Begins
It is important to be ready before the charity meeting starts. Your preparation can assist you with the regular meeting of the organization. So, check all the things that may be beneficial in writing down the meeting minutes like a notebook, pen, paper, etc. This way, as the one who is tasked to take note of the minutes, your job is going to be more familiar and easier. Moreover, do not forget to include the agenda of the meeting and the discussions related to it in the minutes. Also, note the time and the meeting schedule as you go on with the meeting.
2. Make a List of the Attendees
The charity should own a separate attendance log so that whenever it is time for a meeting, members can log their names in it. Yet, you can make a list of the attendees in the meeting minutes. This will present the people who are present during the critical discussion. Also, it is one of the best ways to know your colleagues and their names. If you are unfamiliar with them, you can pass on the meeting minutes and let them write their names. More so, attendance can track the members who did not make it to the meeting. And with the minutes, they will be informed by reading what is on the record.
3. Write Down the Actions Taken
Remember that you do not need to write everything down during the charity meeting. Choose the important parts of the discussion that you consider as useful not just during the meeting but also for the future undertakings of the charity. To do this, be focused and pay more attention to the discussions. If one member speaks out, give him or her the time to deliver the ideas. Then, make a record of those ideas as all members agree with him or her. Hence, the interaction entails that the members have taken actions to improve the charity. You can even include developments from the last meeting in the minutes. Make sure to keep it short and simple enough to be comprehensive.
4. Provide Relevant Details
As the meeting comes to an end, make sure to write down dates and schedules. It will help the charity keep track of the progress regarding the organization’s projects, charitable works, fundraising events, and more. Aside from that, depending on the format of the minutes, provide everything this is required. With the minutes, the absent member can catch with you by skimming through it. It will give them ideas about what the meeting is for and the future of endeavors of the charity.
Do charities have to publish minutes?
A minutes of the meeting is considered as an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) document, which meant to be public. This way, people who have an interest in a non-profit organization, like a charity, can obtain information through the meeting minutes. However, the board members of an organization do not need to share the document with the public unless required.
Who is entitled to the minutes of a meeting?
Based on Robert’s Rule, the secretary of an organization has to keep the minutes and let the other members have access to the document. The members have the right to inspect the minutes whenever they ask for it.
What are the legal requirements for formal minutes?
The main legal basis for holding charity meetings is the strict requirements to conduct meetings, the special authority to preside a meeting, the provision of the proper meeting notice and meeting planning, and meeting quorums.
Every now and then, charities have to call for member meetings to ensure progress within the organization. The meeting is necessary, especially for a striving organization with goals in helping other people. For substantial outcomes, a charity should keep the minutes of the meeting. The future of the organization relies on the actions taken. Hence, there are no other better ways of tracking the progress of a charity other than recording critical discussion and decision making with the minutes of the meeting.
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