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40under40 Submission Writing Workshop


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Established in 2002 by BUSINESSNEWS, the 40under40 Awards programme is designed to recognise and celebrate Western Australia's 40 leading business entrepreneurs under the age of 40. The programme recognises not only personal determination and commercial drive, but also the philanthropic pursuits that balance these young individuals' professional achievements, recognising the less public contributions to the welfare of Western Australia. - See more at:

Published in: Leadership & Management
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40under40 Submission Writing Workshop

  1. 1. Submission Writing Workshop
  2. 2. AGENDA Your submission Writing and editing tips The application form Q&A
  3. 3. CONSIDER THE WHOLE APPLICATION  Why you? (300 words) Success factors (250 words) Set backs (200 words) Values (200 words) Professional recognition (250 words) Contribution to WA (100 words) Community contribution (100 words) Top business tip (50 words) 100 word summary Describe org today Describe org history Describe future of org (1-3 years)
  4. 4. Think about which category to submit to. 60% of last year’s entries were in small business. TAILOR CONTENT TO YOUR FIELD Small or Startup Business Medium-sized Business Large-sized Business Family Business Indigenous Business Intrapreneur Professional Services Community, Social or Not for Profit
  5. 5. WHAT THE JUDGES ARE LOOKING FOR Standout application to cut through and reach interview stage How you deal with adversity All questions completed A clear direction, vision and mission Is making a difference Has evidence to back up claims For overall winner, need to be positioned as the bearer of the Business News brand and represent 2015 for years to come. Who are people going to look up to in the future?
  6. 6. WEIGHTINGS Why you – 25 pts Success factors – 20 pts Set backs – 15 pts Values – 15 pts Personal Achievements 75 pts Professional recognition – 5 pts Community contribution – 10 pts Contribution to WA – 10 pts Wider Community 25 pts
  7. 7. WRITE FOR THE READER, IE THE JUDGES Write initial drafts in Word to get thoughts out, rather than into the online submission form directly Focus on what you need/want to write first (key messages), before worrying about how many words you’ve written – you can always edit later Ensure all answers are aligned and tell an overall story about you
  8. 8. WRITE FOR THE READER, IE THE JUDGES Explain the concept and provide evidence while being careful not to get caught up in minute details Write with confidence, not arrogance. Also, don’t undersell Each sentence needs to have a clear purpose. Sentences that are merely padding should be avoided. If getting started is difficult, try writing about yourself in the third person first. You can revise to first person when editing
  9. 9. AVOID COMMON CLICHÉS One thing led to another It is what it is Paradigm shift At this point in time Ups and downs / rollercoaster Last, but not least Explore every avenue Game changer In order to
  10. 10. EMPLOYMENT HISTORY (100 WORDS) Link to your LinkedIn account If you haven’t updated your LinkedIn in a while, now is a great time Whether you provide a link to your LinkedIn or not, your online presences will form part of the judges’ assessment Google, publicly available social media accounts, press, third party endorsements will all be looked at
  11. 11. ACHIEVEMENTS Why should you win award and/or category Use metrics, quant, data if possible Why you 300 words Detail the factors that you consider had the most impact on achieving your success and why you consider them so. Back up your points with evidence. Success factors 250 words
  12. 12. ACHIEVEMENTS Explain how you dealt with your biggest business/career set-backs or challenges and what lessons you consider were learnt from the experience. Consider highlighting the entrepreneurial and innovative actions Set backs 200 words
  13. 13. ACHIEVEMENTS How have your values and behaviours guided you in your professional endeavours? Values relate to your inner beliefs that guide your behaviours. Behaviours describe how you act or conduct yourself. Refer to OM ThreeSixty’s ‘10 essential core values of a leading personal brand’ Values 200 words
  14. 14. WIDER COMMUNITY Detail any industry recognition, peer recognition, areas of professional expertise, scholarships, honours, awards, published works, professional partnerships or similar Professional recognition 100 words Describe the positive contribution your actions have had on WA business and/or community. Ensure a clear and logical connection. Discuss this with colleagues and friends Contribution to WA 100 words
  15. 15. WIDER COMMUNITY Past or present involvement, active service and membership in community organisations, honours and awards for community involvement or for which the community is the beneficiary Community contribution 100 words
  16. 16. TOP BUSINESS TIP (50 WORDS) Describe briefly those "special words" or "inspirational quotations" which have motivated you to succeed. Can be a tip you’ve written, a mantra, a quote from a role model or inspirational figure, or unattributed motivational saying. Ideally your tip will have a direct connection to your narrative. This should be apparent without you having to explain the link in detail. Not part of the grading, but may form part of the Gala Awards Night.
  17. 17. 100 WORD SUMMARY Think of this as your personal brand value proposition Ensure your summary encapsulates all previous content Don’t introduce new ideas or aspects about yourself here Remember this summary is not marked but will be used for the People's Choice voting page if you want to be included and will be visible to the public. In the case of successful entrants, the summary may be used during the Gala Awards Night.
  18. 18. BUSINESS ORGANISATION Describe the organisation today Description about the history of the organisation What are the future plans or ambitions of the organisation over the next 1-3 years?
  19. 19. YOUR PERSONAL BRAND A leader’s ‘personal brand’ can be considered the image or persona perceived by their stakeholders, which can include Board members, investors, direct reports, staff, current and prospective customers and even competitors. When approaching your personal brand strategically, a deliberate process can help you tailor the perception your stakeholders have when it comes to your values, reputation, skills, attributes, achievements and stature in the most direct way possible.
  20. 20. LEVERAGE YOUR OPPORTUNITIES Use your submission as the starting point to taking a strategic approach to your personal brand Be proactive with your reputation and how you want to be perceived Look for connections and leverage opportunities between your personal brand and the brand of your organisation (organisational brands also include the summation of the personal brands of its leaders and people) Monitor, review and adjust
  21. 21. IN SUMMARY: 1.RTQ/ATQ 2. Easy to read/follow 3. Use evidence 4. Don’t use jargon 5. Take your time 6. Involve your staff 7. Practice your pitch 8. Be yourself 9. Enjoy it! Charlie’s advice
  22. 22. Q & A
  23. 23. ADDITIONAL RESOURCES Handout: Awards Entry Guide Handout: Advice for entering Business Awards Handout: 10 personal branding mistakes that are easy to fix Handout: The Personal Branding Canvas gory/personal-branding