Annual Forum Justification Toolkit

With the complexities of today's global supply chain logistics, it is critical for us to re-evaluate our safety and compliance programs to ensure they are sustainable.

Attendance at COSTHA's Annual Forums can be a valuable tool in helping you meet those challenges. Click here for a customizable letter you can prepare for your manager.

COSTHA Annual Forum - Justification Toolkit

Below is some helpful information to justify the value of attending the COSTHA Annual Forum & Expo.

The  Justification Toolkit includes:


Reasons to Attend

Here is some helpful information that demonstrates the value of attending the COSTHA Annual Forum:

  • QUALITY CONTENT –Technical programs selected by knowledgeable and experienced professionals. Immerse yourself in business, technical sessions, and trainings focused on the safe and compliant global transportation of dangerous goods. Presentations are downloaded for sharing.

  • MEET THE EXPERTS –Connect with regulatory representatives and experts from around the world. 

  • NETWORKING –Grow your network.Meet with colleagues from around the world to share ideas and insights. 

  • VALUE – The COSTHA Forum delivers incredible benefits. In just a few value-packed days, your investment will pay off in increased knowledge, and a powerful professional network.

  • TRAINING – Essential training at an extraordinary value… all at one time, all in one place. Training is provided by well-known industry professionals. 

  • INVESTING BACK IN THE INDUSTRY – COSTHA uses revenue from the Forum to support many other important projects and initiatives to encourage global harmonization of the regulations and enhance safety. 

  • EDUCATION – Earn Continuing Education Credits or Certification Maintenance Points (CMPs) for attending the general session and training courses. 

  • SHARE THE SMARTS –Knowledge Transfer with your team.


Networking Opportunities


You won't want to miss the  networking opportunities at the COSTHA Annual Forum. In today's  challenging economic environment, when you have to pick and choose travel and  meeting attendance carefully, make sure you choose this business critical  conference - The Leader in Value for You and Your Company. Below are some tips to help you get the most valuable networking experience from the COSTHA Annual Forum:

  • Scan  the list of speakers and attendees and decide who you want to meet with. Review the COSTHA Annual Forum Brochure ahead of time and decide which events you want to attend.
  • Know  what your organization's goals and targets are before you arrive at the  meetings.
  • Interact  with industry contacts facing the same issues as your organization.
  • Attend the Sunday Night Ice Breaker and take advantage of this informal networking opportunity (first time attendees will not want to miss this).
  • Visit  the exhibit hall, for access to vendor contacts showcasing tools which you can  evaluate for potential future use.
  • Sign  up for training to meet your training requirements and attend workshops  showcasing best practices that will immediately benefit your group. 
  • Read  name tags to explore networking opportunities, especially when you are standing  in line.
  • Introduce  yourself each time you sit down or approach a new group of people.  Keep your business cards at hand, and give  them out generously.
  • Set goals at the onset of each event to meet at least one new person, learn at least one useful thing, and have a substantive discussion with a new acquaintance.
  • If you make a contact with someone, make sure you follow up afterward, or follow up with information promised immediately. Make yourself a follow up plan, including contact names, company information, how you met, and your follow up action plans.
  • Make the connection, don't leave it to chance.


Letter to your Manager

Click here to download a letter (Microsoft Word) in which you can customize and use to give to your manager to help justify your attendance at the COSTHA Annual Forum & Expo.


General Tips

  • Be ready with a plan that shows who will cover for you while you are attending the Forum.
  • Don't spend all your  time with the people you already know, take the time to get to know new people.  This is a great opportunity to put faces to  names.
  • Turn your cell phone to vibrate or off, so that you are not distracted when networking with people.
  • Don’t be shy about asking advice on nearby attractions.
  • Fill out the conference evaluation forms. Your input helps the conference planning team with future events you may want to attend.
  • Arrive in plenty of time for scheduled events. Take a seat upfront, introduce yourself to those around you and get settled.  If the speaker has arrived early, you may have a chance to introduce yourself.
  • Come prepared to ask questions or share experiences if asked.
  • Dress in layers.  You may find you’re going from too much air conditioning to hot hallways. Temperatures can vary widely and there is little forum organizers can do to satisfy everyone.
  • Bring at least one change of shoes (changing socks or stockings for evening events helps, too).
  • Prepare a prepaid courier slip to send materials back to the office.
  • Make sure to pack plenty of business cards.
  • Plan your forum’s days ahead of time. Make any appointments you can in advance, and sign up early for seminars.  Get to know the forum locations (Exhibit Hall, Training rooms, dining and coffee break areas, restrooms, and lobby stores or snack machines).
  • Use   the exhibit hall map to plan a strategic approach to seeing the suppliers  you want to see and collect the information you want.  Review the Exhibit Hall.
  • Pack  a shoulder bag sturdy enough to hold notebooks, folders and anything you may accumulate at the forum.
  • Read up on any industry news and updates to understand what’s affecting the people you’ll be meeting with.
  • Don’t forget to charge all your electronics including cell phones, iPhones, digital cameras, digital readers, music players and more.  Consider a universal charging mat instead of packing a half dozen cords.
  • Back up your laptop before traveling.  You never know what can happen while you’re on the road.

While in Greenville, SC

Average temperatures in April: Daytime highs of 73 degrees and Nighttime lows of 50 degrees.


Upon Your Return

  • Focus on what you will specifically bring back to the organization as return for the investment.
  • Organize your cards and send e-mails, thank-you notes or promised information as soon as possible.  Don’t let the important contacts you made slip away.
  • Review your notes and make an action plan to utilize what you learned at the sessions. Share information with other staff members, include notes in a report or put them on your planning calendar
  • Offer to prepare and deliver a short presentation and Q&A to your colleagues to share what you learned. This way others in your unit will get the benefits of your attendance, too. Share the  syllabus and speaker handouts with your colleagues. As an attendee, you have unlimited access to materials posted by speakers.
  • Consider preparing a formal report for your boss or team, with details explaining the value of the forum.  This is a simple way to make their reporting chores a little easier.