The skills you need to be an accurate minute-taker (scribe)

What is a scribe or minute-taker

Minute-takers scribe what people are saying (or a summary of what they’re saying) while they say it, at a meeting, interview or workshop then edit that draft to produce whatever document is needed – a transcript, report or minutes.

A minute-taker needs a different set of skills and qualities than, say, a transcriptionist who scribes a recording of an event after it has transpired.

The skills you need to produce accurate minutes, transcripts or reports

The skills you need to accurately scribe and produce transcripts, minutes or reports of discussions, meetings, interviews or other events, are as follows.

  • Good corporate writing and self-editing skills (the better your writing and self-editing skills, the better your end product will be). This skill can be continually improved. The more experienced you are, the better your reports will be. Stay posted for our upcoming article about the specific writing and editing skills you need to edit and produce well-written, accurate minutes or reports.
  • Ability to paraphrase and summarise, or at least leave out  the ‘unimportant’ words, as you type, and the ability to use shortforms (which you can translate into formal narrative style later). These skills are especially important when scribing when people are speaking quickly.
  • Excellent knowledge of spelling, grammar and punctuation, eye for detail and proofreading skills.
  • Fast touch-typing skills (90 to 100 words per minute). Because when you’re scribing, you need to be able to think faster than your flying fingers. For more information go to: How to increase your typing speed
  • Very good auditory (listening) skills. Go to: Scribing: the importance of good auditory skills
  • Very good comprehension skills. Go to: (link pending: Scribes need very good comprehension skills) Please be patient; we will publish this article soon.
  • Great accuracy. Go to: The importance of accuracy in minute-taking.
  • Ability to work under pressure.  Go to: The pressures of scribing and minute-taking..

More information

Image: Thank you to WOCinTechChat for permission to use this image.



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