IN TODAY’S business environment, when competition is fierce and the economic climate is often unpredictable, it is easy to become absorbed in the day-to-day running of your organisation.

Taking a step back to look at what we have achieved is not self-indulgent nor egocentric but a chance to shift the focus away from profit alone as a measure of success and concentrate on what unique qualities your company has that makes it stand out from the crowd.

How often do we find ourselves looking for reassurance or a recommendation when buying in to something new? It is the same for business.

I often hear people say they do not have the time to enter awards, or writing an entry can eat into valuable time which they could be spending with current or prospective clients.

In reality, once you come around to it, entering an award is an efficient and inexpensive way (free when it comes to MK BAA) to attract new leads and secure existing customers.

Just look at last year’s winners of the Business of the Year award, Bletchley Park. This year it has already smashed its previous visitor number records by welcoming its 200,000th visitor in August this year. 

Or perhaps winner of the design and creativity award White Leopard, which has gone on to work with leading Milton Keynes academic institution The Open University, headline sponsor of MK BAA.

Recognition from your peers can be worth far more than self-certification. It showcases your company, clients, products or services and often says why you are the best in your sector better than you could through self-promotion.

And it is not just about business success. Entering and hopefully winning awards creates a buzz within your team, giving a definite morale boost.

We always see such a buzz on social media around the awards, with teams sharing selfies and stories of their awards win for many months to come.

It is also an opportunity to build relationships with your clients or suppliers. Awards present an ideal opportunity to enter in partnership with another organisation, demonstrating how you worked together to achieve your mutual business objectives and foster the business community.

This year there are a number of changes to MK BAA that have been implemented to make the entry process as efficient and easy as possible for the busy business person across the MK postcode area.

Companies will first have to submit a short entry in stage one, with the need-to-know information, followed by further supporting information should they be shortlisted.  

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