Some thoughts on capturing key decisions in my meeting notes. Updated Saturday, November 6, 2022.
I always miss an important detail in my meeting notes. My mind is focused on other parts of the discussion and story. Thinking about what I miss, it’s some of the key decisions.
Things like dates or actions and who’s doing them pop out pretty well, but I miss other things. But what to capture? What are key decisions?
This is where I landed:
Key decisions affect dates or “rights” of any parties. The mnemonic SMART-G describes what I want listen for. Key decisions include anything that affects:
- S — Scope/objectives
- M — Money
- A — Acceptance criteria
- R — RACI relationships/people/who’s responsible
- T — Time
- G — Goals
S — Scope
Scope and objectives refers to any decision about a specific scope or objective, especially if it changes the previously agreed scope or objective. Scope represents the concrete, explicit commitment to be fulfilled.
M — Money
Any decisions or observations that note or change how much something will cost. Cost can be either a key constraint or commitment to be managed and fulfilled.
A — Acceptance criteria
Any decisions or observations that define how scope will be evaluated for completeness. Acceptance criteria define how something should be completed, how you know you’re done.
R — RACI
Any decisions or observations that involve people and their responsibilities. This can be people to reach out to, people assigned a task, people to be aware of, the people who said something that affected any of the SMART-G decisions.
- Robert knows the answer to this
- Keith said we needed 24 participants
- Erin is doing this task
RACI notes identify who is committed to scope and acceptance criteria.
T — Time
Any decisions that affect when something will happen, start or stop, or any decision about how long something will or should take. Time reflects a commitment much like scope and acceptance criteria.
G — Goals
Any decision or observation that runs counter to known goals or high-level strategy. These can indicate a misalignment between activities and overall goals or that goals have shifted and should be re-captured.
Seems like a lot of stuff. I’m hoping the mnemonic, SMART-G, helps me remember what to listen for. Going to try this for a bit, and see if I stop missing those important details.