Effective Note-taking Techniques for Productivity

notetaking techniques productivity

Taking good notes can help you better absorb information, which can make you feel more in control during meetings. Taking notes also gives you a chance to get your thoughts down on paper and organize them for future review. While it’s important to capture as much information as possible, there are some tricks that will help you take effective notes during meetings and other professional situations.

Keep a running list of questions

When you leave a meeting, write down all the questions that are still unanswered in your mind. Then, keep that list with you until they can be answered–whether it’s later that day or sometime over the weekend (or even next week). If one of those questions still hasn’t been answered after some time has passed, set a reminder on your phone to remind yourself to look up the answers later when it’s convenient for both parties involved (and not just for yourself).

If you’re unsure about something, write it down

This can be especially helpful when you’re reading a contract or other dense material that doesn’t lend itself to quick comprehension. If there’s something in the text that isn’t clear, jot down what question or idea popped into your head and then revisit the passage later on when you have more time to think about it.

This technique will also help keep track of what topics need further research so that they don’t get lost in all the information being presented to you at once.

Write down the main points in one color and your own thoughts in another color

You should use a different color to distinguish between main points and your personal thoughts. This will help you organize your notes, and it will also make it easier for you to see where the ideas come from. You can use this method if you prefer writing in notebooks or on paper rather than typing on a computer.

If you are taking notes on a laptop or desktop computer, then another effective way of organizing your information is by using tabs in Microsoft Word or using headings in Google Docs. You can create as many tabs or headings as needed so that each of them represents a section of information related to a topic or theme.

Use different-colored pens or pencils to help separate different kinds of information

Use a different color highlighting pen/pencil for quotes from articles or contracts, key points that stand out in meetings.

  • Red: Important things you need to remember, such as deadlines and dates.
  • Green: Things that are up for discussion, like what you want from a project or what kind of changes you’d like to make.
  • Blue: Decided items (like projects completed), which makes them easy to find when looking back through your notes later on.

Leave some space between paragraphs

Another important note-taking technique is to leave some space between paragraphs. This will help you later when it comes time to review your notes, as well as give you an idea of how much information is included in each paragraph. You’ll be able to tell when one thought ends and another begins, making it easier for you to follow along with what was said during meetings.

Additionally, leaving spaces between paragraphs allows readers (like yourself or teammates) to easily access the next section of text without having to hunt around for where they are supposed to begin reading again after stopping at the end of one particular paragraph.

Stop writing when you’ve reached a natural stopping point

When you’re taking notes, it’s important not to write too much or too little. You should also be careful not to write too fast–this can cause you to miss things that are important.

When it comes time for a break, stop writing when you’ve reached a natural stopping point (e.g., when someone else starts talking).

Leave room for important ideas that you want to remember later on

When taking notes, leave a few lines between paragraphs, and space at the top of each page for additional information. This helps you keep track of what’s been covered so far, as well as making room for ideas or questions that come up during the meeting or lecture.

Stay focused on what’s being said, but don’t hesitate to take notes if someone asks a question that you don’t understand or can’t answer right away

One of the most important things you can do while taking notes is to stay focused on what’s being said. It’s easy to get distracted by other people, but it’s important to keep your eyes glued on the presentation or speaker so that you don’t miss anything.


Taking good notes will help you better absorb information while at meetings, and make you more prepared for future discussions. We hope these tips will help you take better notes, so that you can focus on the conversation and absorb all the information that’s being shared. Remember that note-taking isn’t just about recording what people say; it’s also about giving yourself space to reflect on what matters most. And if you’re ever unsure about something, don’t hesitate to write it down!


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