We are very proud to be sponsoring the Chamber Business Award for Small Business of the Year. The ceremony is a fantastic celebration of dedication, hard work and success. The winner of the award will be given a number of brilliant opportunities and benefits, but how do they get there? And what does it take to be a winner at the Chamber Business Awards?
We spoke to some of the NFU Mutual judges to find out what they’re looking for in a potential winner and what it takes to win. Here’s what they had to say:
1. Strong market understanding
Each business needed to have a strong understanding of the market in which they are operating and know what differentiates them from their competitors. There needs to be a real depth of understanding of marketing and a strong brand image. It’s also important that businesses plan for, and have sight of potential changes in the marketplace.
2. Growth potential
It’s important that a business has clear growth and investment plans with a robust strategy behind them. There must also be a vision or at least a consideration for diversification of business activities and vertical integration in their supply chains.
3. Staff development and engagement
Something that always stands out is a business’ commitment to their staff. Are they given opportunities to develop? Are members of staff engaged? These are all incredibly important and contribute to one of the most important factors overall and that’s a shared vision. Every employee must buy into the vision of the business for it to be successful.
4. Financial Stability
Financial stability is an absolute must. There needs to be a firm grasp on the financials, forecasts and predicted growth or expansion with a good sprinkle of strategic planning. We are looking at how well the business has performed and the growth that has occurred over the last 2-3 years.
It is amazing to see the number of SMEs that have these practices in place and how resilient and adaptive they have made themselves. This allows them to go toe to toe with some of the largest national and multinational blue chip organisations in the UK.