Caveat: These are subjective so your ranking could be completely different.

I finally figured out what I want when I get together with groups of other professionals. I can rank my experience with an Icky scale. I know. It sounds bad, but it’s not. ICK = Inspiration, Connection and Knowledge.

Inspiration = WOW! Something this amazing is possible, which opens up the world of possibility. For Inspiration, I am considering a scale from 0-10.

Connection = there is someone else on this sort of journey with me with whom I can relate, talk to, share, etc. The value here is the number of people with whom I will REMAIN connected. One is good; Three is AMAZING. I want to explore the ideas that I gain from a gathering with colleagues.Connection has become so important that it’s weighted 2x.

Knowledge means that I know how to do something that I didn’t know before. For me, knowledge is all about application. It doesn’t have to be a direct how to if it engenders a new way of looking and thinking about something.

Any single ranking above a 7 for will bring me back. A connection score of 3 will make this an annual/regular event for me and one that I will evangelize. Much of the time a first experience that is amazing might not hold up on a second. Some of the difference in ranking comes from presenting and attending rather than merely attending. Since this is a new discovery for me, I am still testing it out. Here are a few top of mind events and how I feel about them.  And there is a longevity graph for this too, but that will be a different post.

What criteria do you use to say, “Yes! That was a great experience and one I will absolutely do again”?