Pickford Business Coaching & Consulting , BKIN, BA – Bachelor of Kinesiology


Retaining the Brilliance: Overcoming the Forgetting Curve at Conferences

Attending conferences is a whirlwind of knowledge and inspiration. However, without a proper strategy, much of the acquired knowledge can be forgotten. In this blog post, we will explore techniques to overcome the forgetting curve and ensure that your conference experience leaves a lasting impact.

Understanding the Forgetting Curve

Have you ever attended a conference, felt invigorated by the ideas and concepts presented, but found yourself struggling to retain and implement them afterward? This phenomenon can be attributed to the forgetting curve. Coined by German psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus, the forgetting curve demonstrates how our memory rapidly declines over time if the information is not actively reinforced.


The statistics associated with the forgetting curve are quite astonishing. Within one hour of learning something new, we forget 50% of it. Within one day, that figure rises to 70%, and within one week, we forget a staggering 90%. This presents a significant challenge when it comes to retaining and applying the knowledge gained from conferences.

Effective Note-Taking

To combat the forgetting curve and retain valuable conference knowledge, it is essential to have a reliable note-taking system in place. Drawing from my own experiences, I have developed a system using index cards that has proven to be highly effective.

During conference sessions, take notes on index cards, dedicating each card to a specific idea or thought. Include the page number and topics for reference if you need to revisit them later. As a bonus, if you have multiple businesses, assign a company name to each card to keep track of relevant insights.


To enhance organization, consider color-coding your index cards. Assign different colors to various topics or areas of focus. For example:

– Green for finance-related ideas

– Blue for systems and processes

– Pink for staffing and personnel

– Yellow for future planning, such as next season or fiscal year

– White for any other miscellaneous or cross-cutting concepts

By understanding the forgetting curve and implementing a note-taking system that aligns with your learning style, you can ensure that the valuable insights gained at conferences are not lost but actively applied in your business and professional endeavors. In the next blog post, we will delve into strategies for effective conference preparation and follow-up to maximize the impact of your conference experience. Stay tuned to discover the steps you can take before and after a conference to ensure successful implementation of conference insights.

The future of your business is waiting – are you ready to seize the opportunity? Book your free consult today with Tara at Pickford Consulting and take that first step.

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