I’m an Award Winner!

Actually, it’s more than that.
I am a winner of the Chartered Institute of Marketing’s Excellence Award.

And, as a Chartered Marketer, I have to say, it was a proud moment.

In the three years running up to the event in 2015, I had entered twice and been shortlisted twice.  My submission was in the Corporate Reputation Category, and we (a 40-year-old oil and gas services company) were up against Barclaycard.  Stiff competition indeed, and in every category, there were global and high street names all vying for recognition for their peers.

Easy to say now that it was a ‘David and Goliath’ moment when our name was called, and we snaked our way from the back of the ballroom to the stage; but at the time, my good friend (and former Line Manager), Jenny and I genuinely felt we were making up the numbers!

The awards night took place at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Mayfair and was hosted by comedian Russell Kane; he made the whole night memorable from start to finish.  We were rubbing shoulders with senior executives from all the top advertising agencies in London, as well as from Diageo, Holland & Barratt and First Great Western.

Our entry concentrated on the communications strategy around a crane toppling incident that took place at Aquatic’s Operations Centre in Peterhead the year before. It focused on how the external and internal communications were planned, managed and implemented.  At the time, we suffered little negative press, and this is because I was not afraid to talk to the media; a key lesson for any organisation large or small.  Senior managers instincts are often to say, 'no comment' and walk away, yet by partnering with the local media and bringing them in on the story, we were able to control the flow of information and share with them news updates on our terms, which gave them what they wanted – the story behind it all.

We watched award after award and finally it was our turn.  It was the then Marketing Director of Sky Movies who went up on stage and announced the short-listed companies and showed a showreel that accompanied the entries.

And then it came.  The 2015 CIM winner for Corporate Reputation is… Aquatic Engineering & Construction.

Jenny and I couldn’t believe it!  We had won and, in such style too.

Great night, great applause, great reward for everyone’s hard work when that crane fell over!