The Secret to Note-taking for Busy People how to

The Secret to Note-taking for Busy People #buildempire


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In this video I’ll share my tips for neat and efficient note taking. You’ll learn an effective note-taking technique for any type of work: The quadrant method. Whether it’s for your work meetings, for your consulting projects, taking notes for school or even for your own personal projects- this method works wonders. It’s how I take perfect notes now for every meeting I attend.

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00:00 Why You Need An Efficient Note Taking System
02:30 How to Takes Notes For Work
04:55 Take Notes By Hand
06:35 Wrap Up

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  1. Been a while since I was in a f2f meeting, but vaguely remember an old meme whereby boys/men would judge you based on whether you had shirt pockets…

    The macho logic was that if you were Alpha you don’t need a PEN bc you will be telling others what to do, not taking notes i.e. instructions down…

    If you don’t need a pen, you don’t need a pocket. That’s what a suit jacket is for, anyway – and alphas always wear a jacket. People who just wear shirts are worker drones. Or worse, engineers!

    That then chains to the concept of never taking your jacket off – bc that implies sitting down, hence doing actual work!

    A true alpha just flies in, dumps a load, and flies off. Let the minions take care of the details!

    And in this way, the fashion for not taking notes was born. It marks you out as a worker drone, and nobody wants to be seen sucking up to the boss…. Or worse, seeming like they are too dumb to remember or understand ‘simple’ instructions.

    And the flip side, having such an anti-work agenda that writing things down makes you look like you have given in to the tyranny of the workplace, so you have to keep up your rebel image by pretending not to care…

    Of course back on planet earth, we know this is just ego garbage. But corporate life can be brutally toxic.

  2. Well…I am a doomed one, as I hardly take any notes but it is so hard to actively listen and participate and take meaningful notes. So I am very much looking forward MS Copilot now for which I was chosen to be an early adopter. I actually hope this will change my world.

  3. Would add to capture point of meeting to top. Helps to stay on topic, shorten meeting and ensure the outcome that was desired by calling or attending meeting.

  4. Thanks,

  5. Thanks for another great video.
    I find it very difficult not to write everything down and my writing is bad too – so I try to review my notes as soon as I can afterwards and annotate them with a different colour (green) – particularly writing clearly any words that I won’t be able to figure out later on.
    I like the quadrant idea, but my meetings usually run to several pages of A5 so what I usually do is mark my actions with a star in the right margin, actions for others with a square in the right margin. General notes I write at the bottom or right of the page with a line drawn around them.
    Another tip – is to write down the names of the attendees on the page in advance if I can (or else while waiting for them to turn up ) and I write their initials – so during the meeting I only have to write their initials in my notes not their full names. I also tick their names off as they turn up so I have a record of who was there and who didn’t show up and it helps me keep track of who is who.

  6. I love how you said I’m doomed at the beginning. LMAO 🤣

  7. Thank you so much! Now I have a system instead of pages of writing everything TY

  8. Will this work for note taking in high school? If not, do you have any suggestions?

  9. Konstantinos Barlas

    Very nice tips. Everything you say make perfect sense and I will start implementing Quadrant method from today! I only disagree with the part that you propose to take notes by hand. I get it, but I don’t think it will work for me. I’ll give it a try though.
    Anyway though, not everything works for everyone!
    Keep up the good work!

  10. Jakob Abrahamsen

    Awesome tip. Have been struggling wiht meeting notes for decades. Will try this out!

  11. OMG, this video is gold to anyone who has to take notes! If only someone like you had been around to show me these techniques when I was in high school or college, I bet I could have been a straight A student. As it is, this will help me when I have meetings with my consulting clients, and I plan to try to get my teenage daughter to watch this video as well. Thank you so much for making it.

  12. Thank you Leila for sharing this tip. Guilty as charged!! I have wandered all around the map from no note-taking, poor note-taking, furious note-taking, and somewhat decent note-taking, but never great note-taking!! I’ve always admired people who would have the ability to capture key take-aways in succinct terms regardless of whether they would take notes or not. I will give your method a try!

  13. Great tips for note taking. Couple of suggestions:
    • Always add a due date to every task – even better if those dates are agreed upon in the meeting itself.
    • If the participants are open to it, use Word’s Dictate feature during the meeting to transcribe the whole meeting. Then you can use your AI software of choice (e.g., ChatGPT) to summarise the notes for you and extract the action items. I haven’t found it reliable enough for broader distribution but definitely useful for my own personal meeting recaps.

  14. They’re doomed.😅😅😅🙋‍♀️

  15. Vinayak Pardeshi

    Thanks for this Leila, much needed ❤

  16. I always write the key points and actions on a wipe board or paper and, when these are adjusted and agreed by all, I get everyone to take a photo on their phones. If on a Teams meeting, then everyone takes a screen shot of the final doc. Then we are all on the same page, literally..!

  17. Great! Totally new content for me! Thank you 👍

  18. New trend – record the meeting and let ai do it

  19. Bill Blanchette

    I have used Word’s dictating function to digitize my hand written notes after a meeting, it works great

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