So you may already have had awards success and are searching for the next challenge or you may still have reservations about whether you want to actually nominate yourself. Whatever your reason for deciding not to complete an award entry for you or your own business, why not consider becoming an awards judge instead?
We have often lamented about the great exposure and wonderful opportunities which come from participation in the award process. Being included in the event PR, the chance to network with lots of new people, the social media buzz – the advantages of taking part are almost too numerous to mention.
Being a judge has many of the same advantages, just seen (and being seen) from a different perspective and there is no doubt that the judging process itself can be such a positive experience. If this is something you think might be for you, we’ve listed a few points below which could start you off on your journey to judging success;
- Find your Niche
You will need to have a significant degree of knowledge on the category you will be judging so think about what best represents your experience and particular talents. It may be, for example, that you are a bit of an expert on innovation, but this is quite a wide topic so it’s worth considering the finer detail/ specialisms it could cover such as digital innovation or workplace innovation etcetera. The more specific you are, the more valuable your input may be.
- Do the groundwork
As well as making sure you keep your personal knowledge up to date on your chosen category (looking at current trends and current thinking on the topic), there is also a great benefit to be had from doing some research on the awards events which have included it in the past and in what guise. It can also be incredibly useful to look up past judges and past winners, from which you will be able to glean the skills and knowledge which the organisers value in their judges – and also the attributes and achievements of applicants which have been deemed worthy of award.
- Get involved
As with many aspects in life, opportunity seldom comes knocking out of the blue and there is mostly always a need to ‘put yourself out there’. Make sure that your own social media presence reflects your specialism and try to include some leadership pieces on related topics. Sign up to relevant publications and make sure you receive newsletters – increase your chances of getting prior notification of awards events and get on the radar of any organisers who may be looking for judges in the future. Even better, make direct contact with those running the sort of awards which particularly interest you; there’s no shame in throwing your hat into the ring and the earlier, the better. You may be doing them a great favour after all!!
If this has whetted your appetite to get involved, then make sure you start planning now. In the same way as if you wanted to enter as an award contender, get yourself familiar with the awards calendar and make sure you have your own foundations in place well in advance of the entry dates. There’s a whole load more information on The Awards People website and on our vlogs page (https://www.theawardspeople.co.uk/video-blog/) you can even hear first hand from guests who have themselves been judges.