Sticking your head above the parapet can be a scary moment. People shoot at you.
It’s tempting, in business, to want to stay in your cosy castle, keep your head down, and avoid looking for anyone out there threatening the castle walls.
But then there are those businesses that WANT to stand out. The ones that (metaphorically speaking) raise their hand and say “Hey, we’ve got a great idea.” Or “Hey, we’re proud of our successes.” “We want to share our story.”
They’re the ones that aren’t afraid to try new things. To stand on that parapet, wave the flag and lead the charge.
Playing safe, simply holding your ground, can sometimes be the riskier position. If you don’t stick your head above the parapet, how can you shoot back? People might want to take pot shots at you anyway, sometimes from behind your back.
Which brings us neatly to the 2018 Westpac Queenstown Business Excellence Awards.
Every two years our local Chamber of Commerce invites businesses large or small, new or old, to poke their head above the parapet.
And it’s not as scary as that might seem.
Entering the awards delivers some very real benefits to you and your business – from the self-assessment process and the boost in profile and team morale. You might be chosen as a finalist, maybe even win your category, or you might not.
Even if you don’t make it to the Gala Awards Dinner, going through the process of entering the awards is worth the energy and effort, because it forces you to evaluate your business from an outsiders’ perspective. Three judges are going to assess your business success based on your replies to a number of very specific questions.
Any Queenstown Lakes business can enter the awards, and it’s free to do so.
There are multiple benefits of entering, not least because you have to:
- Look at past, present and future
- Focus on business planning
- Talk about areas where you excel
- Acknowledge areas where you could do better
- Recognise areas you’re missing out on and opportunities
Time spent on your business is never a waste of time – whether you win or not.
The process is easy
- First pick your category/categories
- Understand the questions
- Answer the questions (you’d be surprised how many businesses fail to do this properly!)
- Look at the points weighting for each answer
- Work our which bit goes where for each answer
- Employ the language of success
What to expect
The awards questions have been fine-tuned over the years to make the playing field as level as possible for a range of businesses, whether you’re a hole-in-the-wall hospo operation or a large corporate entity.
Usually they go along these lines:
- Describe your business
- Talk about management and strategy
- Describe your four main strengths
- Outline performance, KPI’s and how this is used in the management of your business
- A supplementary information page
- A couple of additional questions if you have entered one of two specific awards
Fiona’s Top Tips
When the structure of the awards entry is so well defined, it’s relatively easy to break down what you should be addressing in your answers.
- Tell the leadership stories of your business
- Demonstrate where you’ve led with innovation
- Show how your people are engaged
- Aim high and don’t hold back
How SPR helps
Thinking of entering the awards but not too sure where to start?
We’ve been in the communications business for over 24 years and we’ve helped many companies, big and small, break through the competition and come out on top! Our winner and finalist list is long and includes the likes of MAXRaft, Landmark Homes, JUCY, Partners in Grime and Ziptrek Eco Tours just to name a few.
Executing a timely, concise and enticing award entry is half the challenge and we’d love to help you shine. We can help with anything from proof-reading, answering a specific question or writing your entire entry.
We’re the wordsmiths you want on your side – we know business, we know tourism and we know what judges want to see and hear. So, put your head above the parapet and let your business shine.
Southern PR will run our popular series of workshops to help businesses shine the spotlight on their own business practices and put their “best foot forward” with their entry. The workshops will take place on Wednesday August 8 at 4-5pm, Friday August 10 at 8-9am and Wednesday August 15 at 8-9am. Please get in touch to reserve your spot.