Five-Fifteens: A Simple Way to Keep Information Flowing Across Teams

Hands typing on a computer

Five minutes to read, fifteen minutes to write.  

A five-fifteen is a communication tool that makes the task of reporting upwards a quick, painless, and easy thing to do. The basic idea is to sit down and write the answers to just enough questions that it would only take you fifteen minutes to write and someone else five minutes to read.

This is a process we encourage everyone to do at Lullabot. It gives your direct report or entire team – depending on who you want to send it to – an idea of how your week is going and the challenges that you may be facing so that they have a chance to empathize and try to help in any way they can. It gives you a chance to speak your mind about your work, your life, and to give your direct report the all-important feedback that they need to hear in order to better help you in your life and in your work.

We’ve written a tool to help the creation of these letters. You can use it by going to http://515.lullabot.com/ and following the few short steps that will help you open that line of communciation. It uses your default mail client and is totally client side, so no record of the emails are stored in our system. It’s a completely open source tool, so feel free to send us pull requests or fork it for your own purposes from GitHub: https://github.com/Lullabot/fivefifteen

What’s your favorite way to communicate valuable information to your direct report or team?