I’m delighted to announce that I’ve been shortlisted in the Best Coach category in the 2018 Best Business Women Awards.

Now in their fourth year, these awards are open to any female business owners in the UK.  They are judged by a panel of business experts from banking, finance and the University of Hertfordshire Business School and winners will be announced at the gala final on 11th October 2018.  You can read the full list of finalists here.

This is great news of course – it’s always lovely to receive recognition for what you do – but the process of entering the awards was also very useful.  And these are my three unexpected benefits:

Stop and reflect

Submitting an awards application can be time consuming and this is often off-putting to over stretched business owners.  There’s lots of writing and digging out evidence such as figures, press coverage or testimonials.  But it’s actually very affirming to revisit positive experiences and successes.  Life can be so busy – especially when you run a business – that we are often on to the next thing before we’ve properly appreciated what we’ve achieved.  And if you have a team it’s also a great for them to receive positive feedback on the work they’ve done.

Right any wrongs

Life is never all plain sailing.  But again, in business, when things go awry, it’s often necessary to solve the immediate problem and move on before you’ve had a chance to consider the wider picture.  So, taking a bit of time to reflect enables you to see any common themes or issues across things that haven’t gone as well.  And gives you a chance to make changes that can benefit the business in the future.

Plan for the future

Some of us are better than others at having a plan but taking a long hard look at what you do brings a clarity to where you are and makes it easier to articulate where you want to go and what you need to do next to get there.

And there you have it – and that’s before you even take into account the potential marketing benefits, networking opportunities and increased credibility.  So, don’t be put off by the process because even that can be of value.  And please keep your fingers crossed for me on 11th October!