Why awards are worth our blood, sweat and tears

On the back of Enterprise First winning ‘Future of Enterprise Support’ last Friday at the National Enterprise Network Awards, it’s made me think about why we enter these and others and what it means when we win.
Genuine delight sums up how we all felt; especially being up against other Enterprise Support organisations who we know are doing great things. As well as an opportunity to engage in some really positive PR, winning an award lifts the morale of the business.

We all work hard and are dedicated to our jobs but this makes it a bit sweeter and is a great reminder of what we have achieved in the past year.
I’m generally a great believer is the saying “Don’t look back; it’s not the direction you are travelling.” But I make an exception when winning an award; it is absolutely worthwhile reviewing what you did and what the judges saw in your application as it obviously resonated with them!
Entering awards is hard work but get it right and you get some great PR and even if you don’t win, being a finalist is worth shouting about. It is a lot of effort and time putting a strong application together but see it as a chance to tell your business story and you have nothing to lose!
So, here are my top tips for writing awards entries:

Read the entry criteria several times
There are always clues to what the judges are looking for. Take time to really think about what to include ensuring you meet the criteria.
Evidence
Think of awards applications as a bit like writing an essay. Every time you state a fact, you should have evidence to back it up.
Make it personal
This is your story to tell. You know what you do best, while a PR agency may make you sound good, you risk losing some authenticity along the way.
Supporting material
Always send supporting material. This helps the judges form a better view of your business.
Don’t make assumptions
Don’t assume the judges will have any prior knowledge of your business. My experience as a judge is that they make decisions purely on what is included in the application form and nothing else.
Be different
Make your application stand out. You’re aiming to be the one the judges remember, so take care over presentation, get someone to proof read it for you and make copies for future reference.

 

Natalie Maxim

Natalie Maxim

Marketing Manager, Enterprise First

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