Sharing knowledge and starting discussions using lightning talks

Sharing knowledge and starting discussions using lightning talks

Since lots of people at Procurios work in multi-disciplinary teams it is not uncommon to have only one or two direct colleagues that perform exactly the same tasks as yourself. A threat to this approach is knowledge on a certain discipline never goes beyond the virtual walls of an agile-team. Other disciplines have other challenges. Our servicedesk for instance is quite large and not everyone can share every bit of knowledge with every other employee. To share knowledge accross these boundaries most disciplines organize lightning talks.

What are lightning talks?

I don't think there is a definition that is set in stone but I feel it is generally accepted that instead of a full-feature presentation a lightning talk is a shorter presentation that falls somewhere in the 5 to 15 minutes range. At Procurios we follow this format:

  • A presentation lasts 5 minutes
  • After each presentation we have 5 minutes of discussion
  • Preparation is encouraged but not required, sometimes a rant is all it takes
  • Slides are allowed, not necessary (I write a lot of lightnintalks on a bit of paper, it is only 5 minutes after all)
  • The amount of talks per session differs per organizing discipline, but most I know of take a maximum of 3 per session

We use a clock for timing at most sessions I attend but if someone can finish his/her story within a reasonable time-frame we're probably going to let it slide. After all the purpose is information sharing. I'm particularly fond of the discussion time myself. This immediately tells us if this is something we can adopt then and there or if it is a hot topic that needs its own time in a separate meeting.

Lighting talks, lightning talks everywhere

Many disciplines and groups within Procurios organize lightning talks, there are lightning talks from:

  • Backend developers (weekly)
  • Frontend developers (weekly)
  • Web design (weekly)
  • The agile guild (bi-weekly)
  • Customer experience (weekly)
  • Company wide talks (regularly but without a set schedule)

I might even have missed one or two. Principally each of these sessions is open to anyone that has interest. Recently we've started experimenting (dutch) with a lightning talk board where talks are announced making it easier to decide to go and visit one of the sessions.

If you're having trouble communicating with peers across teams or even if you just want a central moment in the week where people discuss ideas I can wholehearthedly recommend lightning talks for any organization. Tweak times, interval, just make it work for you and your organization. And start learning from each other.


  1. 33Francisco 33Francisco Wrote on 15 mei 2017 om 19:49:02

    I must say it was hard to find your page in search results.
    You write awesome articles but you should rank your website higher in search engines.
    If you don't know 2017 seo techniues search on youtube: how to
    rank a website Marcel's way

  2. LeonaKSW LeonaKSW Wrote on 27 mei 2017 om 03:14:25

    Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful article.
    Thank you for supplying this info.

  3. FirstHildegarde FirstHildegarde Wrote on 21 november 2017 om 11:46:01

    I see you don't monetize your page, don't waste your traffic, you can earn extra cash every month because you've got high quality content.

    If you want to know how to make extra money, search for: Boorfe's tips best adsense alternative

  4. seilia seilia Wrote on 17 juli 2018 om 12:48:15

    interesting articles and this is my first first reading.!
    <a href="">poker online</a><br />

  5. chiropractor amsterdam chiropractor amsterdam Wrote on 14 maart 2020 om 11:49:01

    These are a number of the stages and may also include correct head support.
    This may not just present you with pain and stiffness in your
    neck but in addition you might feel pain or
    numbness elsewhere for example your arm or hand.
    These include lifestyle and behaviors such as intense physical exercises or exercise,
    a sleep disorder, and blood sugar changes.

  6. single product landing page single product landing page Wrote on 24 maart 2020 om 10:14:52

    These questions and others devoted to examining the conversion gap by looking from an optimization stand
    point, across channel, content, personalization, social network and mobile engagement.
    You can start while using first option in case
    you are testing the waters but in due time, create your own domain name.
    Small business digital marketing can grow with the help
    and expertise of exceptional young individuals working
    together to provide innovative and effective ideas.

Leave a comment...

Leave a comment

Italic en bold

*Dit is italic*, en _dit ook_.
**Dit is bold**, en __dit ook__.


Dit is een link naar [Procurios](


Een lijst met bullets kan worden gemaakt met:
- Min-tekens,
+ Plus-tekens,
* Of een asterisk.

Een genummerde lijst kan worden gemaakt met:
1. Lijst-item nummer 1.
2. Lijst-item nummer 2.


Onderstaande tekst vormt een quote:
> Dit is de eerste regel.
> Dit is de tweede regel.


Er kan een blok met code worden geplaatst. Door voor de tekst vier spaties te plaatsen, ontstaat een code-block.