We’re introducing the ins and outs of Silicon Valley in our blog series. To encourage knowledge transfer within their organizations, many companies between San Francisco and San Jose use the Lunch and Learn format.
The idea behind Lunch and Learn is to convey expertise in the informal setting of the lunch break. After all, sharing a meal together is always a straightforward way to start conversations. Employees organize the events independently and present topics they are currently working on or which processes are essential for how things work in the company in 30- to 45-minute lectures. This leaves 15 minutes for additional questions and a discussion. Everyone brings their own lunch. Alternatively, catering can also be organized.
Silicon Valley blog series
- Part 1: If you don't ask, you will never know
- Part 2: Chasing the unicorn
- Part 3: “Be a sponge and not a babbler:” Interview with Annika Hoeltje (1)
- Part 4: “Be a sponge and not a babbler:” Interview with Annika Hoeltje (2)
- Part 5: A special mindset
- Part 6: Properly set up for success
- Part 7: Lunch and Learn - Knowledge bit by bit
- Part 8: “The gold diggers from back then are the founders of today” – Interview with Oliver Donner and Loren Heilig (1)
- Part 9: “The gold diggers from back then are the founders of today” – Interview with Oliver Donner and Loren Heilig (2)
Thinking outside the box
From project presentations, to team updates, to short in-house training sessions: the topics to be presented at a Lunch and Learn can run the gamut. The goal is for employees to learn about something with which they were previously unfamiliar through the exchange of information with their colleagues. Thinking outside the box of one’s own department is often instructive and exciting because the exact tasks and processes of the other teams are not necessarily present in day-to-day business. The result: Without a great deal of time and administrative effort, employees are brought to a common denominator on a topic-specific basis. The company as a whole benefits from the creative exchange in a relaxed atmosphere.
When knowledge is communicated in small bites during a lunch break, employees are not tied up for hours in meetings or trainings. Participation in Lunch and Learn is voluntary, which also helps to make the format more relaxed.
Internal and external networking
We at IBsolution also want to use Lunch and Learn to help keep our employees up to date. As for the topics, there are already numerous ideas, for example, new features in SECMENDO.UI5, explanations on correct travel expense accounting, or the teaching of skills, such as SQL for beginners.
And how about expanding the event and inviting companies from the surrounding area? After all, at our headquarters in the Zukunftspark Heilbronn, we’re surrounded by other innovative companies in the fields of IT, medical technology, and research. An exchange in a relaxed atmosphere – also possible in the evening with finger food – offers a great opportunity to discuss potential cooperation and jointly promote future topics.
We could use the Eventbrite platform to launch the event. In this way we’re bringing a piece of Silicon Valley to Heilbronn: Because the companies in that California Valley of the Future Makers also use Eventbrite to invite like-minded people to networking events.