Keith Johnston of OnSite Events posted a reminder that every attendee can benefit from by spending time and money to attend meetings and events.

Events are no longer simply a conference, tradeshow, meeting or party. They are an investment with return expectations.

There are many ways to determine the return on investment, but eventually the cost of attending business meetings and events needs to translate into a financial benefit to the organizations that paid for their employees to attend.

One challenging part of estimating the ROI of sending people to big events is the time delay between expenditure and return. It can take months or years for new contacts to become customers. And, it’s hard to determine the benefit what was learned from the speakers.

One approach is to have employees write a “trip report” that details the contacts they saw and the things they learned. Over time, these trip reports can be compared to the benefits from building relationships with those contacts and implementing what was learned.