There are awards which the world looks forward to. The Nobel Peace Prize for example or The Ibrahim Prize (which is awarded to a former Executive Head of State or Government in Africa who have shown exemplary leadership in their country).
Why do we look forward to these awards? They simply connect us. We want to affirm (or disagree) with the winners. Truth is, how often do we find ourselves looking for someone else’s opinion before we can purchase something or sample a restaurant for example? Winning an award elevates your business and sets it apart from competitors. Through awards, potential clients get to know of your existence (and work) while existing ones are encouraged to stick by you. Awards give business and individuals free (and crucial) publicity. Award ceremonies can also serve as an incentive for establishments to continue to better themselves.
The first business awards in Somalia were held in January 12, 2017. A total of nine trophies were awarded to seven companies institutions. The awards brought together about 200 prominent business personalities and diplomats.
Anyone who has been involved in organizing a similar event will tell you that putting together such a ceremony is no easy task. This gets more difficult in a post conflict scenario such as the Somalia one. From sourcing for sponsorship, creating a publicity strategy for the event and other logistical work such as creating and coordinating a guest list, selection of chief guest to nitty-gritties such as décor and venue selection can be nightmare. Organizing awards ceremonies costs money and human resource too. However, the success of the event makes it all worthwhile.
What do we need to have more award ceremonies in Somalia? We need to invest in ourselves. No foreigner will come and award us for the exemplary work our corporations are doing. Why are corporate organizations not taking this up as a business strategy or as a corporate social responsibility initiative? Awards will also help tell a positive story of the country, something all of us continue to yearn for.