Last week we submitted our Stage 3 information for the Telstra Best of Business Awards 2023.
It is currently with the judging panel, and we are sitting here with our fingers crossed, reflecting on quite an intense reality leading up to the submission. For a business of our size it is already a significant achievement to be in the 3rd round, and we are quite honoured to be this far with our first ever Telstra Best of Business Awards entry.
Here is what we have learned so far, and why we recommend to other businesses to go for it:
1. The Telstra Best of Business Awards is a multi staged and multi format process
This year we have been nominated for a few different awards, and the Telstra Best of Business Awards has been by far most intense. We do, however, appreciate that it does not solely rely on you being a great writer who can summarise their business entirety in 150 words or less. There are multiple selection stages, video submissions, a mostly written pitch stage, and many supporting documents to be created.
It is a multidimensional and very in-depth process, which allows you quite a lot of flexibility to communicate your business values, processes, and achievements.
2. You will have to look at your business from a different perspective, and your confidence will rise.
We have been focussed on getting the tasks done, looking after our clients, expanding our services, and growing our team. But haven’t really had an opportunity to look at all that we have achieved over 15 years as a whole.
Imposter syndrome is extremely common among creative professionals, and even more common amongst women in this industry. The Telstra Best of Business Awards application process forced us to not only focus on all of the positives, but also to find concrete ways to demonstrate our achievements, procedures, and values.
Regardless of whether you progress with the award process or not, you will have a newly inspired confidence in your business.
In our experience that is the power you cannot buy!
3. There will be a lot of useful content after the submission
In a world where content is becoming equal to god, it may become more and more challenging to come up with content to create.
Here are a few things that we ended up with in our content vault for future use:
- A clear list of projects and achievements, as well as written content for many of them.
- Written client feedback and testimonials that focus on a specific topic
- Business operation principles that are written in every day language and can be used as all kinds of posts.
- Some neat documents that we can share with new clients to tell them more about how we work
- List of key topics that can then help us come up with content to share – for example – online security, how to write a brief, community support matters, our team stories, why an award submission process can be super useful
4. Allow way way more time to complete your submissions than indicated.
At each stage of the submission there is a quick intro that tells you how long it is likely to take to complete the submission.
Stage 2 took about half a day, and stage 3 took about 6 days straight (the guide was suggesting 4h and 6-8h respectively).So review everything as soon as you have access to it, so that you can get an idea of what you need to organise. Each business and category will require different inputs – so plan accordingly.
5. You will probably make some new acquaintances!
Shout out to Dmitri from Telstra Best of Business Awards . Thank you for all your help and support with the process, and thanks for checking in with us to see how we were going. It was lovely to be able to speak to the same person again and again, and who knew where we were up to throughout process.
Hope to meet you in person!
6. There is nothing to lose!
The process has been incredibly valuable to us. We had to put many things to paper that were only a common internal knowledge, and it was great to have some external pressure to organise our documents. As many small businesses do, we run on priority lists, and many times internal housekeeping is not really a priority.
So after stage 3 applications, we are more organised, more confident, and definitely more inspired!
7. Just go for it…
We are already thrilled to be this far, and every step in this process is helping us to bring attention to business communities of Regional South Australia – winning this would be a lot more than just a gold star at the end of the day – it would help us to supercharge our voice and that of our clients!
Fingers crossed. Wish us luck in Stage 3!
p.s Some thanks are in order – “With a little help of my friends”
- Thanks to Pip for stepping in to get the projects moving while Giedre was flat out with the submission.
- Thanks to Dominyka for all the help with video submissions.
- Thanks to Mark for organising all the statistical data
- Thanks to Charmaine and Annabelle for the images and “voice support”.
- Thanks to Dmitri from Telstra Best of Business Awards – we do feel a part of the community, thanks to all you did for us.
- Thanks to Michael French from ELC Training Australia, Simon Milcock from Legatus, Jessica Nourse from R87 and Les Pearson from Wakefield Regional Council for their supporting documents with this process.
- And thanks to our family members for the support during the process.