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The Lloyds Bank British Business Excellence Awards

Celebrating the Great British business comeback

For many of us, 2021 will be the year life gets back to something resembling “normal”. The grim headlines we have witnessed over the last twelve months are slowly being replaced by positive developments: record numbers of vaccines administered; plummeting infection rates; and a roadmap out of lockdown.

The British Business Excellence Awards is a fantastic opportunity to continue spreading this good news.

It’s a brand-new awards programme designed to recognise and celebrate the people and organisations that have done something truly special over the last eighteen months. It’s about rewarding growth, creativity and innovation among UK-based businesses, from new initiatives launched to help people and communities during the pandemic, to examples of strong growth and expansion in spite of challenging circumstances.

If you’ve got a story to tell, we want to hear it. With twelve categories to chose from, there’s certain to be an award that reflects your achievements, from a rapidly expanding SME to a creative new entrepreneur. 

But the British Business Excellence Awards isn’t just about handing out trophies. It’s about celebrating the Great British business comeback — and doing it in style.

The return of face-to-face

With Boris Johnson’s roadmap out of lockdown in place, organisations up and down the United Kingdom will be feeling cautiously optimistic about a return to business-as-usual. On 12th April, shops, hairdressers and pubs will be open again — if only in a limited fashion — and the spread of immunity thanks to our incredible vaccine efforts will soon mean a return to offices. I for one, have had my hair dressers appointment organised for many months! 

But the one thing many of us will have missed most is face-to-face contact and live events. For some businesses, their absence will have been seriously damaging. Many will have already pencilled in a full calendar’s worth of meetings for the second half of the year.

For those more cautious about the return to face-to-face, the British Business Excellence Awards, which takes place in November, is a terrific opportunity to reacquaint yourself with your colleagues, clients and fellow businesspeople, and with the benefits of live events.

The plan — subject to any further Covid restriction — is to welcome the cream of the British business community to a lavish black-tie dinner in the heart of London. It’ll be a chance to hear from our finalists and winners, to eat, drink and celebrate our achievements together, and to enjoy the opportunity to be among friends once again.

Ultimately, after such a tough year, we need a chance to relax, let our hair down, and celebrate some of the things we’ve achieved under difficult circumstances.

Learning the lessons of 2021

2021 is also an opportunity to reflect on the lessons of the Covid-19 pandemic — not just the way we responded to it, but also how we can change our behaviours, attitudes and practices in the future. 

As well as rewarding achievements, the British Business Excellence Awards is a fantastic forum for businesses and entrepreneurs to share what they’ve learned over the last twelve months.

Most of us have been working from home for the last year, and while we’re all keen to get back to our offices, it seems certain that at least some of us will never go back to the old Monday-to-Friday commute ever again. Organisations will have to think about how they use their office space, how to offer more flexible hours and workspaces to their employees, and how to support colleagues no longer in the office every day.

It’s fair to say we’ve all gained a greater appreciation for health and hygiene, too. To stop the spread of infectious diseases — everything from Covid-19 to the common cold — we’ll surely encourage sick days, promote healthy working practices and encourage our colleagues to wash their hands more frequently.

And then there’s mental health. Lockdown and social isolation has taken a heavy toll on many people. Employers have a larger role to play than ever before to support their workers’ mental health, to offer a route to guidance and advice, and help lead the conversation on this critical issue.

Celebrating the Great British business comeback

One thing is certain: once the UK economy has reopened and the recovery begun, things won’t be quite the same as they were before.

We’ve all had a chance to think and reflect over the last year, and, although we’re keen for things to get back to normal, to return to our favourite shops and restaurants and to catch up with old colleagues in the office, we’ve all thought about how we can do things differently. We now understand better than ever before the importance of community, and coming together to meet big challenges.

The British Business Excellence Awards provides a platform for businesspeople from all over the country to come together, share stories of their triumphs and travails, and discuss how to grow their businesses and the national economy in a way that’s fit for the post-pandemic era.

Join on the 9th November to celebrate the very best of British Business.