3 tech tools make meetings matter

phone and tabletUsing a few tech tools can make your meeting and your note-taking go a lot smoother. Of course, the most important thing to remember is to in­­clude all the information you need to get the project going after the meeting. So plan ahead and be sure to write down the who, what, when, where and how of all the action items. Christopher Null at PC World offers three tech suggestions to get the job done easier.

  1. Write it down by hand and sync it later. One option is the Live­­scribe 3 smartpen. The pen’s shaft contains a miniature computer, infrared camera and Bluetooth wireless chip. It captures and digitizes your handwriting and drawings that you can later search using the Live­­scribe’s software. Paired with the Livescribe+ app, you can transfer the notes to an iPad or iPhone, and then they’re ready for use in calendars, contact lists, etc. And you can sync the audio with the written notes, allowing you to check something later.
  2. Use your tablet. Several note-taking apps are available to help you organize your notes. Minutes App organizes notes, assigns follow-ups to different people through your address book, tracks time, etc. This is a good bet if you need to keep notes for daily staff updates. Note Taker HD makes a good choice for handheld devices. It in­­cludes simple drawing features and PDF annotation options. Evernote is a favorite for easy note-taking.
  3. Record the meeting. Taking written notes can be difficult if you’re holding a brainstorming session where things happen quickly and everyone is tossing out new and complex ideas. An option is to record the session with a smartphone and a high-end microphone. The Blue Spark Digial Microphone can connect to a USB or iOS device. If you’re capturing the meeting on a mobile device, pair it with an app designed for recording meetings instead of music. Audiolio allows you to bookmark audio segments with time-stamped written notes and then share the files. If you need word-for-word transcription of your meetings, the Rev Voice Recorder app lets you record audio and then send it out for transcription electronically right from the app.