February 16, 2021   by
Responsibilities of a Secretary
An image of a woman recording minutes after a meeting

In every organization or Chama, there is always a secretary who has critical responsibilities to ensure the smooth running of the organization. This applies to most Chamas as well. In such a capacity, it is essential that one knows the requirements and necessities of the organization and what is required of them. This will ensure they are able to take accurate and clear notes as the main role of a secretary is to keep records of an official meetings.

As a secretary, the Chama requires one to handle various responsibilities. They also handle a lot of such issues in an organization as they are responsible for scheduling meetings, ensuring they keep accurate minutes, and they follow up with participants when necessary. As a secretary, one may also keep a copy of Robert’s rule of order, which is one of the most accepted guidelines and procedures. The often have several roles and there are stages required to ensure the job is easy.

Main Roles of A Secretary

meeting minutes
Sample of minutes in a meeting

One of the roles the secretary has is to be one of the guardians of the process of meetings. The secretaries are usually in charge of making arrangements for the meetings. They are also in charge of organizing AGMs and this keeps formal records of the group’s processes and their decisions. This includes the record-keeping of correspondence. When planning for a meeting, the secretary, under the chairperson’s directions, sends out a notice of the meeting to all participants in advance. The notice includes the agenda for the last meeting, as well as handouts and agendas that will be discussed in the meeting. The secretary also offers a paper copy of the agenda and minutes from the previous meeting as well as handouts of the emails sent before the meeting.

The second role of a secretary is to record the minutes of the meeting. He or she must ensure the notes are not only thorough but easy to transcribe after the meeting. If acceptable to the chairperson, and other participants the secretary may record the meeting and later use the recording to transcribe the recording into meeting notes. The meeting recording is important as the secretary is has to read the minutes of the previous meeting and they are afterward approved by the members of the group. The secretary also checks whether all the participants were present. Following up meetings is also additional importance of a secretary.

Normally, in the organization’s standards minutes, a secretary needs to transcribe the notes from the meeting and submit them to the chairperson for approval. They are also responsible for contacting participants and thanking guest speakers for attending the meeting and sending tasks to members assigned tasks in the meeting.

The Secretary’s Roles in Preparation for the Meeting.


There are several factors that the secretary needs to know before a meeting. Most of the issues are easily found out through making inquiries with the chairperson before the meeting. The most important issues to consider before preparation include ensuring they confirm the members are supposed to arrive at any meeting. Find out the agendas and the people responsible. This often includes working with the chair to find out the agendas and involve the people responsible. They also ensure the secretary has a role in ensuring the agenda does not overload. This means the secretary must address the chair and prioritize some agendas over others. And issues that may be covered using a written report.

The type of notes or meeting required, whether formal or informal, brief or detailed is another factor that needs prior preparation. They must also ensure that the Agendas are not overlooked. They must also make arrangements on the mode of note publications. Most secretaries are often responsible for sending out the papers for the meeting. This includes the agenda, minutes of previous meetings, and any papers for discussion or information.

The Secretary’s Roles During the Meeting

During the meeting, the Secretary is responsible for making sure all members that need to attend the meeting arrive or they hand out apologies for being absent. They are also in charge of ensuring the venue is readily available for use and any equipment is available. They should also ensure they have a proper arrangement for the meeting. This involves the seating plan and the meeting plan. The secretary is lastly responsible for ensuring the meeting is in order.

Roles of a Secretary in a Chama


In a Chama, a secretary is important and has several vital responsibilities. For instance, the secretary should ensure all the affairs of a Chama often occur smoothly. They should also ensure that there is transparency in the Chama. Although most people often undermine their responsibilities or they lack to notice them in a Chama, the secretary‘s role is critical in the success of a Chama. For the Chama to run smoothly, the Chama needs to make sure that the secretary is aware of their responsibilities.

Meeting Arrangements

In the Chama, the secretary is in charge of making arrangements for the Chama meetings. This often includes deciding on a date for the meeting, the venue and time, and sending invitations to Chama members. This is similar to what secretary in any organization would. Secondly, they are responsible for recording all the transactions and operations that occur in the meeting. This also includes transcribing Chama’s suggestions and discussions. They also note down the recommendations that come up in a meeting. They are responsible for ensuring during the Chama settings everyone arrives on time and they give apologies for being late. In addition to this some Chamas give fines to latecomers. In such cases, the secretary is in charge of ensuring that the late members have fines .

After a meeting, members require the secretary to create a final draft. Later, the secretary has to send the minutes to all present participants. The Chama secretary’s obligation is to create a duty roster which all members of the Chama must follow. The duty roster contains the responsibilities of members. It ensures that one selects suitable dates for carrying out important meetings and events. Lastly, the secretary is responsible for ensuring the Chama has effective communication and correspondence.

In conclusion, although often overlooked, the role of a secretary is vital to the success of a Chama. The same applies to a savings group, or an organization. Not only are they the guardians of the Chama’s records, but they are also responsible for ensuring all the meetings fair well. This often involves acquiring locations and setting a standard time for all members to arrive.

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This post was written by Martha Adhiambo

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