This month, our own Kathleen Cady Schilling authors the blog for May, discussing the context of adaptation and innovation amid immense change for business, and how this relates to the OED 2020 Business of the Year nominations. Given the parameters for safety during this pandemic, we began working from home, met via Zoom instead of meetings in person, and reconfigured event dates, just to name a few examples of adaptation at OED. One such rescheduled event is the OED 2020 Business of the Year and Economic Forecast Breakfast, typically held in September, but now set for November 5th. We hope that you will join us!
“People will try to tell you that all the great opportunities have been snapped up. In reality, the world changes every second, blowing new opportunities in all directions, including yours.” —Ken Hakuta
Boy, that quote seems very accurate right now. COVID-19 has blown up the world as we know it, but as businesses we must adapt constantly as this situation changes every day. OED continues to work with businesses to provide them with information on new resources and opportunities. However, we felt it was key to make sure that we continue to recognize our businesses that are knocking it out of the park day in and day out.
OED will be opening its Business of the Year nominations for 2020 on June 1st. Great businesses, even in these crazy times, continue to find ways to survive and at times even grow. Business success today likely looks different than it looked 6 months or a year ago. Past award recipients may have focused on expanding locations or sales, businesses success today may be in maintaining customers and ensuring employee health. Today’s businesses may have created new venues for sales, or have created new products that are needed in these times – pivoting manufacturing to needed new products.
Business of the Year applicants will continue to be an employer of choice. Past recipients may have focused on job growth and expanding benefits and programs. Today’s applicants may be focused more on retaining their employees and being creative in keeping people working. Employers have developed work at home options, new employee workspaces, and providing PPEs to their employees. We look forward to seeing what your business is doing.
Lastly, any great business knows that it is not an island. Businesses are part of a community. Even today, we are seeing businesses giving back to other businesses. This commitment can be service (serving on government, school, and local non-profit boards), donating time to specific projects or investments in our communities.
Know a business that you think has done a great job moving forward in these times, have a business that you feel continues to a solid part of the community? Consider nominating the business to OED for its 2020 Business of the Year. Nominations will be available on June 1st. Businesses can self-nominate or can be nominated by another. Applications are available at www.ozaukeebusiness.org or can be requested via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominations are due by Tuesday, June 30th and the awards will be given away at our Business of the Year/Economic Forecast Breakfast on November 5th. We hope you will consider nominating either you or someone else’s business for this award.