This is the third in a series on The Basics of Organizing For Data Science.
In this series:
- Why Agendas;
- Why Prepare For A Meeting;
- Why Document A Meeting;
- Why The [ACTION REQUIRED] email tag;
- Why The Bullet Point.
Why Document A Meeting
- Because data is getting generated by people;
- Because data is getting organized or disorganized;
- Because the probability of full quorum approaches 0 as the number of participants increases to 12 and beyond;
- Because decisions are at their clearest when they are documented and circulated;
- Because those that come after you can trace the intuition for a decision.
Which Meetings To Document
- Meetings with a strong decision component should be documented;
- Meetings with a very strong situational awareness component should be documented;
- Meetings of peers engaged in thoughtcrime or thoughtcrime planning should not be documented.
When To Document A Meeting
- As the meeting is happening, live.
When Not To Document During A Meeting
- Somebody says “Off the Record”, “Just between us”, “Privately…”.
How/Where To Document A Meeting
Several possible ways, here are two:
Live Google Document
- Copy and paste the agenda into the document;
- Share the document with all participants;
- Put the agenda up on a screen where it’s visible;
- Invite free-for-all documentation;
- Record notes under each agenda item;
- All participants are free to correct the record as it is produced.
- Open up blank email;
- Copy and paste all meeting invitees into the send box, add yourself;
- Copy and paste the agenda into the email;
- Pound out notes;
- Invite corrections;
- Say ‘BYE!’ and hit send on the email.
Who Documents A Meeting
- Ideally, all participants;
- If nobody else is doing it, you can immediately boost your value by doing it;
- Some chairs are able to document and facilitate at the same time.
What To Document
- Next Steps.
- Meetings happen for a reason;
- Meetings have an objective;
- The results of the meeting, either in reaching the objective or not, should be documented;
- The results should leave a residue for those who didn’t make it, for those who did, and for those who will come later.