What is this heady cocktail of success that has everyone addicted? Why does stacking up accolades have to be the only driving force?
As a country we are obsessed with competition, winning and success. The prices we pay on this journey, however high, are always driven by the ultimate outcome and that is, of coming out only on top. I have been thinking on these lines for a while and I now get to articulate these thoughts post playing the role of a jury member.
As part of the jury for Fulcrum Awards this year, I would be echoing the voices of my fellow jurors when I say that for us it was an extraordinary experience going through the entire selection process. Traversing through the remarkable number of entries was no easy task and we spent a good amount of time marking them down. We had been assigned entries that were jumbled up for efficient judgement and had to be marked on various parameters each. Then, they would all come together for the final jury meet when the scoring would be tabulated.
While at the award ceremony, the results are presented comprehensively and in order, we as jury are presented a predefined combination of categories each. They are then put together in the larger context from a ceremony perspective, so, only at the ceremony does the jury see the presentation of the awards in that order.
If we were to look at the whole process as leafing through a book, it would start with the submissions which would be the preface and end with the awards as a conclusion. The Jury at all points in time is oblivious to the complete book.
Being part of a jury requires you to have a certain openness and acceptance along with the skill to critique and drive unbiased conversations that lead to the final shortlists. The process was a great mix of using qualitative and quantitative content as evaluation matrices and a blend of objective and subjective parameters that were taken into consideration. It was not the numbers or the quantity that drove the decisions of the jury, but how the out-of-the-box thinking drove the numbers. It was not as much inside out an approach as it was an outside in…
There were instances of the same entry in multiple nomination criteria, some of the campaigns were pure play AVE’s but otherwise, it was a robust set of entries and they were all well placed in terms of meeting the standards that were charted.
Post the ceremony, I did sense a certain kind of disillusionment in some cases and in some cases a confusion about the results as there were questions around the judgements and what drove them.
For us as Jury it was a clear transparent process right from the word go and the way it was organised by the Fulcrum team and audited by PwC was well thought through.
Most of the time, the decision was unanimous and had the vote of the full Jury and the ones that were debated were given their full due before a decision was made.
At this juncture, I want to congratulate this fraternity of Public Relations folk who tirelessly create and execute campaigns that are truly at the soul of the brand and its ethos. This brings me to the point of saying that when you put great work out there and you are driven by the desire to outdo yourself or your brand’s best so far, you will find joy in the work in itself, and awards will find their way to you for the sheer effort that went into a campaign. The parameters of success will break their stereotype and will redefine what it means to you and the brands you work with.
We need to steer away from this frenzy of hyper-competition and welcome a more collaborative industry space that nurtures great talent and ideas, with or without the award tags.
To all the winners – may you celebrate the good work that you do and do more every year …
To everyone else – continue this path of magical discovery and rise and shine …
Let us celebrate the work we do and let’s also celebrate failures and enjoy the learning curve.
Let us choose our journeys of joy!
The views expressed here are that of the author and do not necessarily reflect that of Reputation Today.