Author Topic: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way  (Read 2817 times)

Gyosho

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Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« on: November 02, 2016, 09:38:27 AM »
I was in a meeting Monday at work. The other 5 participants all pulled out their Macbooks to take notes on. I took notes with pencil and paper. One of the other participants joked, "You'll be the only one paying attention during the meeting." (He meant because I had not brought my laptop).

My question is - should I start bringing a laptop to meetings just to fit in? I don't want to send the message that I am outdated, even though I focus more when taking notes with pen and paper and also am not tempted to check my email every minute, as no doubt the other meeting participants were doing.

I am already so eccentric in so many different ways (Mustachianism, etc.) that I'm starting to worry a little about being kicked out of my tribe.

I should mention that I work in IT, and all of us have very fancy workstations back at our desks. Theoretically, we should be able to get away from instant communication for an hour, because we all had other people on our team to cover for us.

What do other Mustachians do?

Friar

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2016, 09:41:04 AM »
Don't worry about it.

People at the company I work for use laptops and notebooks in varying degrees of frequency. I use my laptop to take notes because I like being able to view it across multiple devices and I can type faster than I can write. Others on my team take handwritten notes because that's what works for them.


ooeei

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2016, 09:42:34 AM »
Some of the higher ups where I work use laptops, it usually results in them not paying very good attention.  I think whoever is leading the meeting will very obviously notice that you're actually paying attention.  I can't imagine a situation where a superior would pass you up for a promotion due to that.

MayDay

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2016, 09:45:05 AM »
Engineer here.

I take paper notes in mtgs.

I often type notes on a phone call.  No idea why.


nereo

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2016, 09:46:28 AM »
Something I've noticed in academia - most of the students use their laptops to 'take notes' at any given time many of them are distracted by other things on their laptop and not paying much attention.  The few who take notes in notebooks tend to do the best.

If someone is writing in pen and paper during a meeting I automatically assume they are paying attention. I don't share that sentiment when they're typing away on a laptop.

Ultimately, the quality of your work is what matters, so do what makes you the most effective employee.

ZiziPB

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2016, 10:02:23 AM »
Pen and paper for me.  I don't care what anyone else does in meetings.

Proud Foot

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2016, 10:04:26 AM »
I always use pen and paper.  I always remember things better when I actually write them down rather than typing them.

jamesbond007

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2016, 10:40:23 AM »
Pen and paper. Great way to focus and you actually remember most of it because you are writing using your brain as opposed to just typing away using muscle memory. My conclusion is not scientific but that's how it works for me. Who cares what anyone thinks about me? My job to get the work done effectively. I actually come back to my desk type the important points in OneNote to I have digital access. The advantage is the you are going through the information twice so the likelihood of you remembering most of it is very high.

I use focus notes that I bought at Staples to list todos, questions etc. from a meeting so everything is is on place. I don't think my generation (low 30s) is not evolved completely to rely on digital technology yet.

Pushkina2

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2016, 10:51:50 AM »
I think there have been studies done that show note-taking by pen and paper results in better information retention than when done by laptop.

notactiveanymore

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2016, 11:25:46 AM »
You're good, don't worry about it! If anyone asks, just explain you remember better when writing by hand.

Personally, I use a laptop whenever I have to do minutes and pen and paper for meetings I'm participating in. Even though I cut our minutes down substantially from what I record on my laptop, it frequently helps to have way more of the meeting captured in my initial typed notes. But for other meetings, I really prefer writing things out and making more movement notes (circling and staring and arrows for connected things) rather than force it into a linear typed format.

rockstache

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2016, 11:43:17 AM »
Hmm. I bring my laptop to meetings, because the meetings themselves are generally a waste of time. If I have my laptop, I can get work done while the individual drones on. If your meetings are useful and not this way, then no...I would not bring a laptop solely for the purpose of fitting in.

ooeei

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2016, 01:10:50 PM »
Hmm. I bring my laptop to meetings, because the meetings themselves are generally a waste of time. If I have my laptop, I can get work done while the individual drones on. If your meetings are useful and not this way, then no...I would not bring a laptop solely for the purpose of fitting in.

This is a good option, and what I'm sure a lot of the higher ups at my company do.  I remember one meeting distinctly where the higher ups wanted an update on my project.  There were 2-3 of them, me, and my boss.  About halfway through, when it was obvious I was talking to nobody because none of them were paying attention except my boss (who knew the status), my boss said "So who are we talking to here?  I feel like he's just up there talking to no one."  I just shrugged and carried on, they kept clicking away on their computers.

Axecleaver

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Re: Taking notes in meetings the old-fashioned way
« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2016, 02:45:27 PM »
You use a different part of your brain to write than you do when you type. I use pen/paper in meetings and find it's important to my process. I include notations to identify action items, followup with individuals, and I use different pages for different projects, which helps keep me organized.

Younger generation tends to use computer or (gasp) their phones to take notes, so if this is a generation thing, I understand why you might feel pressured to fit in. But I wouldn't let it bother you.