Top five pro tips for succeeding at the NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards

By jay

Submitted your entry to the 2015 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards yet? With the deadline less than three weeks away we’ve put together some pro tips to help you on your way.

  1. Ask Yourself: what am I really doing here?

While the Awards are open to members and non-members alike there are defined categories for entry. Enter the category that best suits you (if they all suit you, enter them all!).

There are 10 categories you can enter:

  • Sustainability Champion
  • Communicating Sustainability
  • Renewables – Innovation or Impact
  • Community – Innovation or Impact
  • Mega efficiency – Innovation or Impact
  • Restorative – Innovation or Impact.

And in case you’re wondering where you fit in some of these categories, read on:

Renewables: How are you helping to shift New Zealand’s energy to renewable sources? This category is all about energy and getting away from or minimising the use of those dreadful fossil fuels.

Community: Building thriving communities requires strategic business investment within those communities. Businesses involved in thriving communities are creating products and services that build instead of erode.

Mega efficiency: Think smart. Think efficient. Mega efficiency is about shifting from traditional means of operation within industries towards new business models of production, ownership and consumption. That includes   the circular economy, collaborative consumption and zero waste.

Restorative: That means giving back more than you’re taking away. It includes how businesses can add value to the environment, rather than just neutralising their impact.

Innovation: you have an outstanding innovation that meets a pressing need.

Impact: you have programmes, projects, campaigns, or your overall business is making a tangible difference in your sector.

  1. Think before you type

Boost your chances of success by making sure your entry is easy to read, accurate and not peppered with spelling and grammatical errors. You won’t be doing yourself any favours by sending in something that needs deciphering by a code-breaker. Take the time to craft something you can be proud of, something you’d be proud to show your mum.

If you don’t have the time, you can even hire a writer to do it for you. The better your application, the better chance you’ll have.

  1. Collaborate

Sustainability is like team work. We can’t do it without you, you can’t do it without us. Our judges love collaborations so if you’ve worked with others on a project, flaunt it. Show us what your team has got. This is your chance to shine!

  1. Influence

Who do you influence? If you’re affecting big changes in your industry (looking at you Green Star NZI Building, you handsome thing) then tell us about those changes. We’re looking for change leaders and industry movers and shakers.

  1. Prove it.

We need to see what’s under the hood. If you’ve got great initiatives you need to be able to prove they work. Take innovation: If you’re an innovative mastermind then you’ll do well to show off your project that meets a pressing need.

How about impact? Thousands of asteroids hurtle toward Earth but if you’ve got no substantial facts, we’re not calling Superman.  Show the judges how you measure the impact of your project.

It doesn’t have to be large scale but it does have to work.

The deadline for entering the 2015 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards is 10th August.

Find out more about the Awards and read our Guide to Entering. If you have any queries about submitting your entry please email us on awards@sustainable.org.nz