Awards, prizes, honors, accolades, and public acknowledgements: These can make us feel internal pride and are sometimes more needed than the self-recognition. A tangible commendation allows us to feel the public (and colleague) awareness and affirms our hard work, talent, and a job well done.
Going back to the days of soccer trophies and gold stars on your elementary school papers, human beings are hard-wired to want affirmation, and to feel happy having received it. A modicum of humility, or a wealth of it; either way, to feel the tangible result of your dedication to a craft, your commitment to a professional pursuit can serve as a spirit booster, a motivator, and can ultimately end up pushing you to excel.
As an adult in your profession, you may not think awards are important. And although they are likely not what’s driving you, receiving an award can certainly go a long way in giving you that much-needed moral lift or bright spot at the end of a long tunnel of fifty- and sixty-hour workweeks.
Separately, but related, the benefit to the company in which an award-winning professional is performing is multifaceted. By being supportive and submitting to appropriate industry awards on behalf of its associates, the company is in essence saying out loud, “I believe in the work we do, and I believe our talented team is capable of award-winning work!”
This message can go far in conveying to employees that their tireless efforts and well-honed abilities are not being deployed without notice. It also says to potential clients or existing customers that they are or could be partnering with a vendor who employs award-winning talent and values high-caliber outcomes that are the result of their investment.
Receiving an award, or even just being nominated for one, can give associates an injection of energy and zest for their roles and contributions to the company. Increased motivation and good feelings for the individual, higher levels of productivity, and an elevated industry status for the company—a win for all, right?
Why is it then, that awards are not always viewed as important? In some circles they are even seen as frivolous and self-indulgent; unessential at best. Unessential? Or rather unequivocally a good idea and a worthwhile effort as a motivational tactic, a PR topic, a marketing message, a descriptor, and a desirable trait to infuse into a company’s brand identity.
Pulitzer, Wolf, ADDY, Fields, Grammy, Booker, Academy, Kyoto, Nobel, Kavli, Copley or Pritzker; a few among many of the more recognized awards. Bigger or smaller, prominent or less noticed—it’s all subjective and respective to the industry, the accomplishment, and the individual. The thing we’re conditioned to want and need can come in different forms, packages, and manifestations. When the work is good, and the acknowledgement comes, look for ways to spread the love. Writing, posting, and blogging about it becomes an extension of the public awareness with which we began this post.
And on that topic, congratulations to the YGS design team on its recent wins at the Association of Media and Publishing’s Excel Awards!