Well what a year so far!! It’s all gone so quick, I’ve not had time to keep on top of this blog. We’ve just had the big Celebration Event where the winning Company Of The Year were “Crucial Compacts” from Newport Girls’ High School.
It was an evening that was hosted on the 4th May so there were the usual references to Star Wars and it turned out to be an event of Galactic Proportions!!
25 Awards were due to be presented to the representatives from the teams who could make it to the Park Inn in Telford. A large number of tables in the main room were full of students, teachers, business advisers, volunteers, local dignitaries, sponsors and other business leaders from around the county of Shropshire.
The atmosphere was electric and the students arrived earlier than the guests so that they could set up their small Trade Stands and prepare for the onslaught of questions from interested guests. Some wanted to know why they’d chosen this idea, why they’d marketed it this way, why they chose that name, how many sales they’d got and whether they’d be continuing with the company once the year wraps up.
The young adults from all participating schools and colleges always make an effort to dress super smart and this evening was no exception. It proves just how seriously they take the whole experience, once they get this far at least….
Once the mini trade fair was over and the guests sat down for their dinner, Ryan Jervis , the compere for the evening, said Grace and the diners were seated at mixed tables with some of the students and teachers alongside business people from sponsoring organisations and local interested businesses. It really allows the youngsters the chance to interact with some heavy hitters in the local business landscape and allows the business leaders to talk to prospective employees. After all that’s what YE Company Programme is all about, giving the students the skills to either start their own business or integrate into and help other businesses succeed.
Whilst the diners were munching through their soup and chicken, a slide set of what the companies had been up to was shown on the screens around the room. Photos and video footage of their escapades in trade fairs and presentations were shown to the audience with not one or two giggles for some of the faces pulled in the pictures.
First Eight Awards
Once the Profiteroles and Coffees were finished with, attention turned to the stage where the first eight awards were presented
Following these awards, Lucy Francis, HR Manager from my employer, Caterpillar Shrewsbury Ltd stood up and told the audience of her struggle to get to where she is today and talked of her lollipop moments that helped shape her into the person she’s become today. It was a moving and touching story that proved that you should never give up trying and even a simple gesture to someone who needs help can have a huge impact.
Ding Ding, Round Two.
The newly motivated crowd applauded for the excellent presentation before heading into the second round of awards that saw awards for the best entrepreneur and business adviser amongst the others.
Live and Lively
Next up was the three live presentations that featured the top three teams who presented at the Wolverhampton University’s Priorslee’s Campus. Each of the teams were allowed a team of four on stage, one on the computer behind the scenes and four minutes to impress an audience of business people, teachers and their peers. No easy feat but they all pulled it off with apparent ease.
Once all three companies had pitched their product to the throng of assembled guests, all were asked to pick up an electronic voting handset to vote on which of the presentations was the most impressive to them. Fudget from the Grove School won the interactive vote and received their award but the other two teams didn’t leave empty handed from this venture either. All three companies were presented with a £50 cheque from Alamo, the sponsors of this live presentation award.
Finally the room settled down and master of ceremonies Ryan Jervis fired everyone up for the last round of awards which would climax with the presentation of the Shropshire Company Of The Year. Alice Whiston received an award for Outstanding Commitment for her efforts in keeping the company going forward. Her mother Rebecca posted a lovely comment that I know she doesn’t mind us sharing. “Thank you 😊 it’s completely made a difference, she’s a different child with bags of confidence now. Would recommend this scheme to anyone.”
The Foundations For A Business award went to Fudget also for their Recipe book that provided readers with a good recipe for people on controlled budgets. It was selected for this award as it could easily go on from here and become a solid business in the future if the directors of the company wanted to do so.
Shropshire Company Of The Year 2016-2017
The last award and a trophy to boot were presented to the team who’d been consistently scoring high marks with the judges throughout the different stages of the competition. Their appearances at the trade fairs, the presentation at Priorslee and the quality of the report to name but a few important events that they excelled at to deservedly win the prestigious award that will also see them visit Wolverhampton Uni to battle it out with other winning teams from other counties in the West Midlands Regional Final.
Congratulations to Crucial Compacts on their success and it’s a big win too for their business adviser Emma Cantillion and their teachers from the Newport Girls’ High School. Well done to you all and good luck in the Regional Final.