Bucket with holes leaking water

Know that Within 30 Days 80% is Forgotten – comes from the Free Guide – ‘Are you frustrated by training that creates short term interest but not long term change?.

In the mid-1800s, a German Psychologist carried out a series of tests on himself to understand how much he remembered over time. He used 3 letter cards and plotted his research. His name was Hermann Ebbinghaus and his research became known as the ‘Forgetting Curve’.

In essence, Hermann identified that we forget over 80% of what we learn within 30 days unless we do something with the learning. For example, repeating the learning will significantly increase our chances of remembering it for the long term

Forgetting Curve Chart - MBM Training Provider

Forgetting Curve Chart


The impact for Learners is that they will forget what they have learnt unless the learning is repeated, applied, and/or used. If the learning is simply left written on slides, it will be forgotten. Here are 3 ways you can help the Learners to remember more:

  • The day after the training, ask the Learners to teach someone else one thing that they learnt at the event.
  •  10 days after the training, suggest that the Learners make a diary reminder to re-write their notes.
  • 30 days after the training, email the Learners a task related to the learning.

Ebbinghaus’ Forgetting Curve and the Spacing Effect were large contributors to designing Sticky Learning ® because we wanted scientific research to be the driving force behind how we learn best.

Darren A. Smith

About Darren A. Smith

Darren has been working in the world of UK Supermarkets & Suppliers for over 25 years. He began his career as a buyer at big 4 UK supermarkets and after 13 years he decided to leave to set-up Making Business Matter because he wanted to help suppliers and supermarkets to work better together.

Leave a Reply

Where Next?