April 2024

Productivity Hacks

Meeting Recap: What It Is, Why It Matters & How to Write One

Learn what a meeting recap is, why it's crucial for team productivity, and how to write effective recaps with templates and AI tools like jamie.

Founder Associate

Meeting Recap: The Ultimate Guide to Boosting Team Productivity

Say goodbye to unproductive meetings and confused team members. Learn how to create a good meeting recap by capturing key information and takeaways, keeping everyone aligned, accountable, and focused on action items. Plus, get a meeting recap template to make the process of writing a meeting recap a breeze.

What is a Meeting Recap?

A meeting recap is the summary of a meeting. This concise summary that captures all the important details, including the key points, decisions, and action items discussed during a meeting.

It serves as a reference point for all meeting participants, ensuring everyone is on the same page and aware of their responsibilities moving forward.

An effective meeting recap should include the meeting date, attendees, agenda items, important details, and next steps.

Why Meeting Recaps are Essential for Team Success

productive meetings main benefit of effective meeting recaps

Meeting recaps play a crucial role in fostering team productivity and collaboration. By creating and distributing comprehensive meeting recaps, you can:

✔️ Keep Everyone Aligned and Accountable

Meeting recaps ensure that all team members, including those who couldn't attend, are aligned on key decisions and action items. This promotes accountability and helps everyone stay focused on their tasks.

✔️ Provide a Reference for Key Decisions and Action Items

A well-written meeting recap serves as a reference point for key decisions made and action items assigned during the meeting. This helps team members prioritize their work and meet deadlines.

✔️ Help Absent Team Members Stay Informed

Meeting recaps are particularly valuable for team members who were unable to attend the meeting. By providing a concise summary of the discussion, decisions, and next steps, you ensure that everyone is kept in the loop.

Did you know?

With jamie there is no need to write a long meeting recap. You can simply send out your meeting notes to all participants after your meeting!

Try Jamie

What to Include in a Meeting Recap

To create an effective meeting recap, it’s crucial to start by including the entire meeting agenda to outline discussed topics, tasks, and decisions. Include the following elements:

📌 Meeting Details (Date, Time, Attendees)

Begin your meeting recap by stating the meeting date, time, and a list of attendees. This helps provide context for the discussion.

📌 Agenda Items and Discussion Points

Outline the main agenda items and summarize the key discussions around each topic. Use bullet points to keep the information concise and easy to read. Additionally, incorporating outcomes or unresolved issues from the previous meeting is essential to ensure continuity and context for the next steps.

📌 Decisions Made and Rationales

Clearly state any decisions made during the meeting and provide a brief rationale for each decision. This helps team members understand the thought process behind each resolution.

📌 Action Items with Owners and Deadlines

List all action items generated during the meeting, along with the team members responsible for each task and their respective due dates. This ensures accountability and helps drive progress.

📌 Next Steps and Future Meeting Date

Conclude your meeting recap by outlining the next steps and any upcoming meetings or milestones related to the discussed topics.

How to Write Meeting Recaps

writing meeting recaps

Knowing how to write a meeting recap effectively is crucial, as it provides guidelines and tips for summarizing discussions, decisions made, and actions to be taken in a business meeting. To create effective meeting recaps, follow these simple steps:

1. Take Clear Notes During the Meeting

To ensure accuracy, take detailed notes during the meeting. This will make it easier to create a comprehensive meeting recap later.

2. Use a Structured Template

Using a meeting template can help you organize your thoughts and ensure you don't miss any essential details. Customize your template to suit your team's needs.

3. Keep It Concise Yet Comprehensive

Strike a balance between brevity and thoroughness. Your meeting recap should be concise enough to be easily digestible but comprehensive enough to convey all the important information.  

4. Highlight Key Takeaways and Decisions

Make sure to emphasize the key takeaways, decisions, and action items in your meeting recap. Use formatting techniques like bold text or bullet points to make these elements stand out.

5. Proofread Before Sending

Always proofread your briefing document or meeting recap before sending it out to ensure clarity, accuracy, and professionalism.

Meeting Recap Templates and Examples

writing a meeting recap

To help you visualize how to create effective meeting recaps, we've prepared a free template and an a couple of great meeting recap examples that you can easily reference and adapt to your own needs.

Free Meeting Recap Template

  • Meeting Title: [Insert the title or purpose of the meeting]
  • Date and Time: [Insert the date and time of the meeting]
  • Attendees: [List the names and roles of all meeting attendees]
  • Agenda Items:
    1. [Agenda Item 1]
      • Key Discussion Points
      • Decisions Made
      • Action Items (Owner - Due Date)
    2. [Agenda Item 2]
      • Key Discussion Points
      • Decisions Made
      • Action Items (Owner - Due Date)
  • Next Steps: [Summarize the overall next steps and any important deadlines]
  • Next Meeting: [Insert the date, time, and purpose of the next meeting, if applicable]

How to Use This Templat

  1. Copy the template into jamie.
  2. Fill in the meeting title, date and time, and list of attendees.
  3. For each agenda item, note the key discussion points, decisions made, and action items with assigned owners and due dates.
  4. Summarize the overall next steps and include the date and time of the next meeting, if applicable.
  5. Customize the template as needed to better suit your team's specific requirements and preferences.
note book to write meeting recap

Meeting Recap Examples

Next, let's explore a practical example of how to use this template. Below you'll find two completed meeting recaps for hypothetical team meetings. Use these examples as a guide when creating your own meeting recaps.

marketing recap example meeting recap email
meeting re-cap example

Writing Meeting Recaps with AI Tools

AI tools like jamie are not only fantastic for writing meeting recaps but are also invaluable for planning and summarizing key points for an upcoming meeting. They can automatically record, generate AI summaries, and detail the time, location, objectives, agenda, and attendees for future meetings, ensuring nothing important is missed.

Streamline Meeting Recaps with jamie

jamie is an AI-powered tool that can automatically transcribe your meetings, making it easier to create accurate meeting recaps. Simply record your meeting using jamie, and the tool will generate a transcript for you to reference when writing your recap.

Powered by the robust AI technology, jamie excels at:

  • Crafting polished recaps of meetings
  • Converting spoken dialogue into written transcripts
  • Distinguishing and listing out actionable tasks and decisions with remarkable precision

Designed to blend in effortlessly across all communication platforms such as Zoom, Google Meet, and Teams, jamie can also function effectively offline, thereby honoring user privacy without being an obtrusive digital participant.

With proficiency in over 15 languages, jamie's transcription capabilities serve international and multilingual teams effectively.

Customization with jamie

jamie is tailored to fit your unique requirements rather than offering a generic solution. It allows you to enrich its vocabulary with specialized terms and acronyms, which enhances the accuracy of both summaries and transcriptions it provides.

ai generated notes

jamie can also help you generate meeting summaries and identify key points from your meeting transcript. This feature saves time and ensures you don't miss any crucial details when creating your meeting recap.

Extract Action Items and Assign Owners

With jamie, you can easily extract action items from your meeting transcript and assign them to specific team members. This streamlines the process of creating action-oriented meeting recaps and ensures everyone knows their responsibilities.

How to Share Meeting Recaps

meeting organizer share recaps

In many organizations, the team leader is often responsible for sending out the meeting recaps to all relevant stakeholders, ensuring that everyone is on the same page and can refer back to the meeting recordings and discussed points as needed. Follow these expert tips to ensure your meeting recaps are shared and stored effectively:

1. Share Recaps with All Relevant Stakeholders

Once you've created your meeting recap, share it with all relevant stakeholders, including team members, managers, and clients, as appropriate. This keeps everyone informed and aligned on key decisions and action items.

2. Store Recaps in an Accessible Central Location

Store your meeting recaps in a central location, such as a shared drive or project management tool, where all team members can easily access them. This makes it simple for everyone to refer back to past recaps and track progress over time.

3. Use Recaps to Track Progress and Ensure Follow-Through

Regularly review your meeting recaps to track progress on action items and ensure team members follow through on their commitments. This helps maintain accountability and keeps projects moving forward. 4. Reference Past Recaps to Prepare for Future Meetings

Before heading into a new meeting, review relevant information from past meeting recaps to refresh your memory on key decisions, action items, and discussion points. This helps you prepare for

taking meeting notes

Are Meeting Recaps Worth the Effort?

While meeting recaps can be incredibly valuable for keeping team members aligned and accountable, it's essential to consider both the pros and cons before deciding whether they're worth the effort for your team.

recap process is it worth it

👍 Pros

  • Meeting recaps ensure everyone is on the same page, serving as a reference point for future meetings.
  • They promote accountability by clearly assigning tasks to team members with due dates.
  • Recaps help keep absent team members informed and up-to-date on key decisions and important details.
  • Meeting recaps can be easily shared and stored, facilitating better collaboration among team members.
  • They provide a concise summary of key points, making it easier for team members to stay aligned and focused on essential information.

👎 Cons

  • Creating comprehensive meeting recaps can be time-consuming, especially for lengthy or complex meetings.
  • Some meeting attendees may find recaps redundant if they took their own notes, leading to decreased engagement.
  • Over-reliance on meeting recaps may cause team members to assume they can simply read the recap later, reducing participation during the actual meeting.
  • If not well-organized or concise, meeting recaps can become lengthy and difficult to parse, defeating their purpose.
  • Consistently writing effective meeting recaps requires discipline and commitment from the meeting organizer or designated note-taker.

Despite these potential drawbacks, the benefits of meeting recaps often outweigh the cons. Recaps can significantly improve team productivity, collaboration, and alignment. However, it's crucial to find the right balance and format for your team to ensure that creating and distributing meeting recaps doesn't become a burdensome task.

Conclusion: Boost Team Productivity with Better Meeting Recaps

Meeting recaps are a powerful tool for keeping your team aligned, accountable, and productive. A well-crafted meeting recap is not just a document; it's a compass guiding your team towards its goals.

By following best practices and leveraging AI tools like jamie, you can create comprehensive, action-oriented meeting recaps that drive results. Start implementing effective meeting recaps today and watch your team's productivity reach unprecedented heights.

🔍 Meeting Recap FAQs

What's the difference between meeting minutes and a recap?

Meeting minutes are a formal, detailed record of a meeting, while a meeting recap is a more concise summary focusing on key decisions, action items, and next steps. Meeting recaps are less formal and are meant to be easily digestible by all team members.

How soon after a meeting should I send the recap?

It's best to send your meeting recap within 24 hours of the meeting's conclusion. This ensures the information is still fresh in everyone's mind and allows team members to start working on their action items right away.

Who should receive the meeting recap?

The meeting recap should be sent to all meeting attendees, relevant team members who couldn't attend, and any stakeholders who need to be kept informed of the meeting's outcomes. This may include managers, clients, or cross-functional collaborators.

How long should a meeting recap be?

The length of your meeting recap will depend on the complexity of the meeting and the number of topics discussed. However, aim to keep your recap concise and focused, typically no more than one or two pages. Use bullet points, headers, and formatting to make the recap easy to read and navigate.

How do you write a recap email after a meeting?

To write a recap email after a meeting, follow these steps:

1. Start with a clear subject line that includes the meeting date and topic.

2. Begin the email by thanking attendees for their participation.

3. Summarize the main points discussed, decisions made, and action items assigned.

4. Use bullet points or numbered lists to make the information easy to read. 5. Include any relevant documents or resources mentioned during the meeting.

6. Conclude with the next meeting date and any final reminders or requests.

What do you call a summary after a meeting?

A summary after a meeting is typically called a meeting recap, meeting summary, or meeting notes. These terms are often used interchangeably to describe a concise overview of the key points, decisions, and action items discussed during a meeting.

What is a conference recap?

A conference recap is a summary of the key takeaways, sessions, and networking opportunities from a conference or industry event. It typically includes an overview of the main themes, highlights from keynote speakers, and insights gained from workshops or breakout sessions. Conference recaps are often shared with colleagues or published on company blogs to share knowledge and key learnings with a wider audience.

How does jamie help in creating meeting recaps?

jamie excels at crafting business-grade meeting summaries, and transcriptions of meetings. These meeting recaps are not only detailed but also come with a feature that can identify and sort notes according to the topics covered in the discussion. There is an option to tailor these documents as per specific requirements (source).

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