Nominating your business for an award has many rewards. For winners there is the personal satisfaction of a job well done, the industry recognition, and the certificate you can display, giving your customers peace of mind that they are dealing with an award-winning business.
But the benefits keep coming regardless of whether you win. Award submissions are often heavily detailed forcing you to hunt through your files, analysing your original business plans and marketing goals, and considering their success. The process of submitting an award becomes a great way to audit your year, and consider its success and what can be improved upon.
Seeing as you are reading this article, I can only assume that you are thinking about submitting for an award category, the question is, when is a good time to start preparing.
Well the answer is – TODAY!
It doesn’t matter how far out the award submission date is, there are things that you can start doing now to help you write an outstanding award submission - and this might sound a bit like cheating – but thinking about this process early will set you up for the win. If you know what category you are going to submit for, you can make sure that your focus is on achieving success in the areas outlined in category questions.
Each award will require different information, but as a rough guide consider setting up an ‘award submission’ file and dropping the following items in it:
1. Business plan
2. Mission, Vision and Values
3. Staff induction/training guide
4. Marketing plan
5. Customer service policy documents
6. Sustainability statements
And start gathering stats from the running of your business such as:
1. Visitor/sales figures
2. Response statistics/sales from particular campaigns
3. Geographic and Demographic stats for your visitors/customers
And don’t forget to look further afield. Most awards will be looking at your contribution to the wider industry (whatever industry you are in). So keep a record of:
1. Staff attending industry training sessions run by governing bodies
2. Any industry memberships you hold
3. Any industry programs you participate in.
Having written numerous award submissions over the years, I can tell you that preparing early will take a lot of the stress off you when you come to preparing the submission content. And any contractor that you hire to prepare the written product will be asking you for these things.
If you are looking for a submission writer, please drop me an email – Melinda@honeyandflint.com.au.