How winning an award makes all the difference
Jason Briggs – Research & Prospect Manager, University of Sheffield
A year on, winning our 2016 IoF Insight in Fundraising Award has had a huge impact on both myself and the team as a whole, in terms of our profile internally at the University, as well as externally.
Incredibly, this was the first time we had entered any awards. We had been building up our work and waiting until we felt it was strong enough to enter, and not only did we win the Most Powerful Insight Using Innovative Methods of Data Analysis Award but we were also highly commended in the Most Powerful Insight Through Research category and Finalist for Best Use of Insight at the National Fundraising Awards.
As a team or individual, you can always bring attention to your work by presenting it to others, but the moment you win an award it often takes people’s interest to a much higher level. An award acts as a stamp of approval that shows that this person, this team, and this project have been critically appraised by their peers, and that makes more people interested in hearing about it.
On an individual level, an award gives your CV a level of credibility that makes people take note,drawing attention to what you’re doing. For our team as a whole, it’s created a great celebratory atmosphere in the office because people are proud of what they’ve achieved, and it also makes other people ever more confident when they work with us.
Importantly, it has also had a positive effect on our relationship with senior management because the Directors were thrilled that one of their teams had won an award. Winning certainly brings more weight to the table by making Directors take greater notice of what you’re doing, and this might then result in you being granted more resources when you need them.
Entering these awards therefore is something we are now convinced is worth doing and we hope to do so again. Winning undoubtedly makes others look twice at what you’re doing, helping to raise the profile of your team and everyone in it, and on an individual level, it can provide a great boost when you want to take that next step in your career.