Secret marketer: It’s award season and a time to recognise and thank those who have impressed

This is probably my favourite time of the year.

Apart from the fact that my email box slows a little (post Black Friday, Silly Saturday, Cyber Monday), and various agency parties and black-tie dinners dominate my evening diary (and cloud my morning attention span), it is when I announce the winners of my annual marketing team awards.

Around this time every year, I run a competition where everyone in my team votes for the person in the team who has most impressed them during the year.

Awards vary from the mildly amusing ‘Biggest Liability on a Night Out’, ’Beard of the Year’ and ‘Megaphone Award’ (for the loudest person on the team) to the slightly more aspirational ‘Best-Dressed Marketer’, and my favourite ‘Cup of Sugar Award’, named after the concept of moving into a new house, and a neighbour coming round with a cup of sugar – in other words the award for the person who has gone out of their way to help someone else during the year.

Then there are the ‘Campaign of the Year’ and the ‘Team of the Year’ awards as well as the big ones – ‘Junior Marketer of the Year’ and ‘Marketer of the Year’. The one that probably attracts the most interest is ‘Agency of the Year’, where everyone in my team votes for the marketing agency on our roster that has impressed them the most – is it our PR agency, which provided great media coverage; our lead creative agency, which came up with a killer brand campaign; or maybe the small web, social media or event stand-building agency that I hardly know?

The reason I love this so much is that apart from being a bit of fun, it does give people an opportunity – anonymously – to identify those who stand out from the crowd. But it also reinforces to me what a tight, closely-knit team I have built.

While I cannot announce the winners yet, I can confirm that an incredible 89% of the team received a nomination in at least one category – there are no shrinking violets in my team. OK, so some of my female colleagues appearing in the shortlist for ‘Beard of the Year’ is no great accolade, but at least it shows they were thought of.

The sad thing is that the person who built this team, who leads this team into battle every single day, who has 30 years of marketing experience, didn’t get a single vote for ‘Marketer of the Year’ – me.



Mark Ritson: Missing Steve Jobs? Meet Tesla’s Elon Musk

Mark Ritson

BESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswyBESbswy Ten miles north of Apple’s Cupertino headquarters is a company called Tesla whose CEO, Elon Musk, has the vision and courage to do things really differently. It would be wrong to say he’s the new Steve Jobs – he’s set to be a lot bigger.


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