How to present a 9 minute lightning talk

Focus on one or two things to talk about. You can’t tell your entire intranet back-story.

Solutions are good, but problems are a lot of fun. Share your digital workplace woes with the audience.

Maybe put together four or five slides. Certainly no more than nine.

Tell the story:

  1. set out the challenge / problem;
  2. explain the impact of the problem (to the org and to people);
  3. showcase the approach you took to find / plan the solution (metrics, team members, processes);
  4. reveal the solution;
  5. discuss the implementation;
  6. express the impact and success;
  7. review any concerns, failures, or things you’d do differently.

Tell your story, share some heartache and some lessons.


  • Practice! Do a dry-run to check your timing as 9 minutes will fly by.
  • Don’t spend more than 20 seconds explaining your career or company backstory. Seriously.
  • Don’t talk as soon as your next slide comes up – pause for a second to allow people to read (so they can listen to you).
  • Limit the number of words on a slide, and use bullet points.
  • Use eye contact and body language to speak to the people at the back. Yes, the microphone will work well, but it’s up to you to engage the whole room.
  • Remember – everyone is here to learn! Intranet Now is a friendly event, run for the community, by the community, and people are genuinely interested in your story.