They’ve been described as a showcase for the region’s female business talent, a major influence on the future growth of our business sector and a clear message to the next generation of female business leaders – and the entry/nomination deadline for the Tees Businesswomen Awards 2019 is now just two weeks away! Tees Business co-editor Dave Allan on why you shouldn’t hesitate to enter…
Just 18 months ago, the Tees Businesswomen Awards, in association with Northern Skills Group, were still just a germ of an idea, albeit one my fellow Tees Business editor Martin Walker and I were publicising with an outward veneer of confidence that didn’t truly match our personal thoughts.
We wondered if they inaugural awards would take off. Would they be ignored? Would businesswomen and local organisations see the value in them?
We needn’t have feared.
We originally felt that we’d be able to hold our heads high if the first awards event attracted 160 guests to a local hotel. It would be low key but worthy – and give us something to build on.
Then we met the woman who would become arguably the awards’ greatest advocate, Teesside University’s Prof Jane Turner OBE (pictured above at last year’s event), who made it clear we needed to significantly raise the bar – and she was proved absolutely right.
Last October, the first ever Tees Businesswomen Awards attracted 275 guests to a prestigious event within the grand surroundings of Wynyard Hall. Judging panels comprising representatives of our sponsors had valiantly reduced impressive applications from more than 100 entrants to shortlists of just three in each of 10 categories – and 10 pioneering winners were honoured on a night that will live long in the memory of those who attended.
But now we’re just two weeks away from the entry/nomination deadline for the second Tees Businesswomen Awards. And we’re already hearing sounds from those I absolutely know would have a great chance of winning that “awards are not really my bag”, that they’re not really in the game of talking themselves up.
My view is that every talented businesswoman based in the Tees region should be seriously considering entering for at least one category, whether as an individual or organisation. The benefits of winning, or even being shortlisted, are numerous.
These include wonderful, positive publicity for your organisation, increased credibility, encouragement and praise for staff and increased business confidence. Your staff, customers, suppliers and business associates will love being linked with a publicly lauded organisation.
But the awards are also about inspiring a future generation of businesswomen and female-inspired Tees businesses, hopefully even more successful than our present-day winners.
As Prof Turner says, the awards are “vital, particularly for this region because we do have some catching up to do in terms of balance, transparency and visibility of women in this region.
“The first awards identified over 100 women who were doing some amazing things, largely under the radar.
“The awards are so important in helping to drive traction and momentum for women in this region – to help them walk a bit taller and to identify female role models for our younger generation.”
There are only two weeks to the September 5 deadline to enter this year’s Tees Businesswomen Awards (and tables are also selling fast).
Entries are being sought for the outstanding females and female-inspired businesses who deserve to win the accolades in awards being held in association with Northern Skills Group, the training and apprenticeship arm of Middlesbrough College.
Winners will receive their trophies at a prestigious awards ceremony at Wynyard Hall’s Grand Marquee on the evening of October 24.
As the Tees region’s business magazine, Tees Business is proud to be giving this opportunity for local firms, organisations and individuals to shout from the rooftops about the women who are making an outstanding contribution – and to the organisations that champion them.
Individual categories include awards for Lifelong Inspiration, Breaking the Mould, Inspiring Others, Best Newcomer and the much-coveted award for Tees Businesswoman of the Year.
Company categories include SME of the Year, Training & Apprenticeships Award, Best Company Scheme for Women, Charity/Voluntary Award and the female-powered Business of the Year.
The awards are free to enter. Nominations can be submitted via the awards section on the Tees Business website.
More details of what we’re looking for from each nomination can also be found in our awards section.
Click here to enter or read about the categories in the 2019 Tees Businesswomen Awards.
Tables of 10, including a prosecco reception and three-course dinner, are £750 + vat and can be reserved via firstname.lastname@example.org
Sponsorship of the Lifelong Inspiration category remains available at £3,000 + vat. Please click here for more details.
The award categories are:
Businesswoman of the Year (sponsored by Teesside University)
Lifelong Inspiration (Sponsorship available)
Breaking the Mould (sponsored by Development by Joseph Homes
Inspiring Others (sponsored by SABIC)
Best Newcomer (sponsored by RMS Recruitment)
Business of the Year (sponsored by Cornerstone Business Solutions)
SME of the Year (sponsored by Punch Robson Solicitors)
Training & Apprenticeships Award (sponsored by px Group)
Charity/Voluntary Award (sponsored by Billions Europe)
Best New Business (sponsored by Tees Valley Combined Authority)