In addition to using your notebook as described yesterday, create a second function by starting in the BACK of your notebook working forward. In this section, I dedicate one page for each employee I supervise and committee I am on. I use these pages to keep a running agenda of things I need to discuss with the person/group during the next time I meet.
Where the synergy develops is when I am in one meeting and something is said that I need to tell one of my employees (or my boss). I can instantly turn to that page in the back (of the same notebook I am using to take meeting notes) and write that I need to discuss the item with that person. No forgetting, no time spent developing meeting agendas — it just naturally evolves.
This back section also works beautifully when it comes time to do employee evaluations. I have a whole record of things we discussed over the whole year, not just what I remember from recent meetings. After I do an evaluation, I just draw a line across the page and I know where to start for the next review period. When my employees use this system too (as many do!), they too have a record of what accomplishments and issues evolved during the year.
I put a piece of light cardboard at the start of the back section and keep an index of the pages (which I number by hand). When someone’s page fills up, I simply continue their list on the next free page in the back section and renumber their page on my index. (See picture).
So I keep working notes front to back and write agenda/discussion items back to front — but with everything work-related in one single notebook. You too can reap the benefits of organizational simplicity with this system!
Final thoughts on this process tomorrow.
— beth triplett
I start in alphabetical order, but you can see it doesn’t always stay that way!