Your chance to shine at awards night
A COMPELLING case for entering the 2013 Northern Lincolnshire Business Awards has been put forward as deadline day looms – by last year's champion of champions.
North Killingholme-based Humber Work Boats Ltd entered and won the Barclays International Trade Award at the 2012 event, and then went one further, scooping the Business Excellence Award, too. The company operates globally, in the port and harbour construction and maintenance sector, and the financial success of 2011 laid the foundations for the submission.
Managing director David Symon said: "When Humber Work Boats Ltd entered, it was prompted by strong export performance in North Africa, with record sales revenues, contributing significantly to record turnover and profits.
"There was no thought given to the competition other than making sure the entry form was thoroughly and accurately completed. The company wanted to be seen by the judges in the best possible light.
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"When the company was shortlisted ahead of the event we were surprised and delighted, and when the Barclays International Trade Award was announced it was surreal as the company video – which had been fun to make – was shown.
"It was very well put together and gasps of approval were heard at the table. 'Just like the Oscars' was one of the comments passed around!"
Still harbouring no thoughts of winning, with members of the team having checked out the websites of their rivals, and seen previous accolades awarded to them, Mr Symon said: "When it was announced 'the winner is Humber Work Boats' there was a mixture of stunned disbelief and whoops of delight. The presentation was a very proud moment for the owners, directors and staff."
But that wasn't all, as the company founded in 1974 by chairman John Morton, soon found out.
"To the surprise of everyone at the table there was another award open to every entrant – the Business Excellence Awards. In a flash another Humber Work Boats video appeared on the screen and the disbelief and whooping started up again," Mr Symon recalled.
First to congratulate him was event organiser and Chamber manager Anne Tate, who had crouched nearby to watch the table's reaction, unbeknown to them.
"That was a lovely and very proud moment for everyone involved," he said.
"On reflection, the feedback from customers, suppliers and third parties has been very positive and the whole experience was a culmination of hard work and dedication being recognised.
"To be pitted against stronger and larger companies from different business sectors and come out on top has given the company a real boost in terms of the future. The company would encourage any business which has performed well to enter for an award. The outcome can be very rewarding, but even if success is elusive the application presents the opportunity to assess in detail your company's performance and have it judged by experts.
"Can the company repeat its performance? Watch this space!"
Entry deadline is Friday, March 8. For full details visit www.northernlin colnshirebusinessawards.co.uk or pick up a brochure from the Telegraph offices.
The awards will be presented at The Baths Hall, Scunthorpe, on May 17.