Last night Warren and I attended the Surrey Board of Tradeís 2011 Business Excellence Awards gala event. Warline Painting was a finalist for one of the Business Excellence Awards. The winner of our category was G3 Consulting Ltd. and we congratulate them whole-heartedly.
The evening was wonderful. Dinner was great. We sat at a table with nominees from other categories and had fun and lively conversations. And we had the pleasure of listening to keynote speakers such as Surrey's Mayor, Dianne Watts and British Columbia's Minister of Finance, Kevin Falcon. The evening was hosted by Pamela Martin who did a great job keeping things moving and on schedule.
Our nomination and then being short-listed to a finalist came as a surprise to us. It definitely wasnít something that was on our radar. But through the process of the nomination and last nightís gala event I learned three important lessons that I want to share.
- The cliché "Itís an honour just to be nominated" is a cliché because itís true. When Warren and I started Warline Painting, one of our main goals was to fill a niche within our industry as a quality-first painting company. Our only expectation for acknowledgement and praise was from satisfied customers and good working relationships with our employees, trades and suppliers. To be recognized by the Surrey Board of Trade, in the fastest growing city in Canada, and to be in the company of other successful businesses of all sizes and industries is truly an honour.
- You only are as good as the people in your organization. This message was repeated over and over in every acceptance speech. Not one of the winners failed to acknowledge that the success of their company was directly attributed to their hard working employees. Last week we hosted a Halloween party for all of our crew and their families so we could get everyone together to thank them for helping us become a stand-out company. Itís their ongoing hard work and their commitment to our company philosophy that put us on the finalist list last night.
- It is good to pat yourself on the back. We didnít nominate ourselves but it would have been okay to do that. Anyone that owns a business knows itís hard. Really hard. We make all kinds of sacrifices, take risks, work crazy long hours and carry a lot of weight on our shoulders. So taking the time to acknowledge what it means to be a small business owner is a very good way to spend an evening.
Thereís another reason awards and recognition are a good thing. Our aim at Warline is to raise the bar for quality and service in the painting industry. By being a finalist for SBofTís Business Excellence Award actually helps our industry do just that. I encourage any small business to look for ways to be recognized for their service and excellence within their industry and community.
So again, congratulations to all the finalists and winners. What great company to be in. Thank you very much to the Surrey Board of Trade, all of the sponsors and to Surreyís Mayor Dianne Watts and her team for continuing to provide opportunities and a great business environment for businesses like ours.