Awards again

It is the awards season again and I’m in two minds. I never know if award events are good things.  I am not alone. A quick straw poll of my Leadership Team would suggest that we are all of the same view.  We are all slightly uncomfortable with them yet recognise that they have some merit.

By entering such competitions, we are promoting our efforts and our ideas.  We are able to highlight the good work of the team or key individuals within it and we are raising our profile within whatever market the awards are aimed at.

On the other hand, self-praise is no praise and self-publicity is just another form of marketing.  Highlighting individuals comes at the expense of others who may have contributed equally yet have not been as visible.  I may indeed be making others feel less worthy by not putting them forward.

The words of Alfie Kohn from his fabulous book ‘Punished by Rewards’ are ringing in my ears.  Are awards a form for reward and therefore something that actually causes a deterioration in performance rather than an improvement?  As I said, I am in two minds.

We have definitely put in entries into two upcoming events, Dynamites 16 and the annual Great Staff, Great Stuff internal awards.  We have entered the first to demonstrate the vibrancy of the North East ICT market, hopefully as a way of helping it to grow.  We have entered the second to show how important technology is to the council and how our involvement spreads across all services.

To do this though we have had to pick on some teams and certain individuals as opposed to others.  This may mean that some will be elated and some may be deflated.  This is not the intention.  My aim is to raise the good name of my service and we should all bask in the reflected glory of whoever is entered, whether they win or not.

I am still in two minds but sometimes you have to go with the flow.

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