The annual Small Business Awards were launched this week on Talk Radio 702 and Cape Talk in partnership with Softline Pastel, with the aim of rewarding small businesses that are doing great things.
The awards call for nominations based on great service and anyone can nominate a small business they have dealt with that has gone the extra mile to get the job done.
“Once again, we are looking forward to celebrating the valuable role that small businesses play in our country,” says Steven Cohen, managing director of Pastel Accounting. “A business owner doesn’t have to offer something unusual or different to be recognised by the awards but certainly has to deliver extraordinary service to outshine competitors and gain the attention of South Africa’s discerning consumers.”
Those businesses that show the most potential are shortlisted and will be interviewed on Talk Radio 702 and Cape Talk in Johannesburg and the mother city. The interviews start on 15 August 2011, and two business owners per city will be interviewed each day – in the morning and afternoon drive shows.
Feedback from previous years’ finalists indicates that this interview alone does wonders for boosting business.
“As soon as we gave out our number on air the phone went mad immediately,” said Genevieve Duffield, whose company, Picture Perfect Cakes, was a finalist last year. “A number of those calls turned into long term clients and repeated business. I have also added the award’s logo to my e-mail signature and I find that new clients are reassured by this.”
The Awards have grown significantly in the last three years, drawing thousands of nominations from sectors ranging from construction to the catering industry.
“This will be the fourth annual Small Business Awards and the response gets bigger and better each year,” said Pheladi Gwangwa, Talk Radio 702 station manager.
“There is a wealth of entrepreneurial talent in South Africa and we know that the small business sector is critical to growing the economy. Awards like these are intended to motivate small businesses by acknowledging the great work they are doing,” she added.
Listeners will be able to nominate businesses throughout the interview process, until 2nd September. Following this, a panel of judges will select the top three finalists and one winner, to be announced at a ceremony on 6th September.
The overall winner will receive a laptop complete with Softline Pastel Accounting, Payroll, HR and Legal software as well as a free Pastel training course or seminar of their choice. The winner will also benefit from an airtime contract to the value of R100 000 on Talk Radio 702.
The two runners up will receive a Pastel Small Business Starter Pack comprising Accounting, Payroll, HR and Legal software, as well as a free Pastel training course or seminar of their choice and a R50 000 airtime contract each from Talk Radio 702.
For details or to nominate a small business, visit www.pastel.co.za.