Awards inspire good businesses to enter into a process of self-evaluation, reflection and continuous improvement to develop into excellent businesses. This rigor and commitment has proven to be invaluable regardless of the outcome - with Auckland businesses returning to compete in following years, using what they have learned previously.
Here are the six top reasons why Auckland businesses value entering the Awards:
Self-review. You want to know if you are on the right track, following best practice and meeting core principles. Entering helps you to sharpen your game, complete a SWOT, reflect and identify 'where to from here?' It is useful just going through the process and realising your achievements.
Benchmarking. Competition allows you to compare yourself with peers, scrutinise your business, to step back and to get feedback from the judges. You can measure up against others, push out from being insular and learn from others. You'll find out how you're doing and it's often better than you think.
The awards process also helps to highlight that you're not alone in the challenges you encounter daily in
Recognition. This is your opportunity to achieve cost-effective marketing and PR through networking, media profile and building brand reputation where entering the awards is part of a wider marketing strategy. You will attract new business, get to tell your story, profile your achievements and build your profile. And it's nice to get a pat on the back acknowledging all the hard work.
Team. You can share the success with the wider team. Your team will learn a lot and grow from the experience. You have the opportunity to really acknowledge your team's efforts. Success is a great recruitment tool, people want to join your business.
Business development. Meet others, make good contacts, open new doors - entering the awards can be in your business plan and a means to strengthen your business.
Competition. Do you measure up against the best? Here is an opportunity to compete across industries (not just within your own), to see how well you're doing and to grow stronger.
In South Auckland some businesses are taking the opportunity to sharpen their game even further. Ray Glass Boats, South winner of Excellence in International Trade, has aligned with Nauhria Precast, Supreme Business Excellence winner for 2015, and other local businesses.
"Going through the awards last year really opened our eyes to a whole lot of things that we could probably do better in our business. Some of the things that we took away from being in the Awards we're adapting into our business and it is just going to make it so much stronger. Those sorts of things really put the Westpac Auckland Business Awards in such high regard so we've taken the opportunity to go and look at other finalists, visit their businesses and talk to them about their learnings, their pain points, how they've handled them and how they've overcome them," explains Dave Larsen, chief executive of Rayglass Boats. "We can learn from each other."