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It May Sound Counterintuitive, But Can an Awards Scheme Level the Playing Field?

We know that stakeholder engagement is tough. Whether large or small, here at 2degrees we’ve seen businesses around the world sourcing expert opinion from our pool of sustainability professionals to find out how best to continue their journey.

We also know that you guys are doing some tremendous things — initiatives that have been largely tucked away in a cupboard, silently working away without the respect they deserve. And we think they need a little bit of sunshine.

Enter the 2degrees Champions Awards, v 2.0.

Now in their second year (hence the 2.0), the 2degrees Champions Awards have attracted more than double the entries from last year, and since the longlist went live there have already been over 2,700 votes (if you haven’t already, you can cast your vote here).

But hold on — rewind. Why are the awards such an opportunity, apart from a boastful title and a flashy trophy to boot?

There are certainly some big players in the longlist, but thanks to our voting system the playing field is levelled so that smaller businesses are just as likely as the top brands to win an award. Instead of leaving the decision in the hands of an elite panel it’s you, their sustainable business peers, who award the crowns.

And if that wasn’t quite engaging enough, the Awards Ceremony itself is an ideal opportunity to bond with other teams, but it’s also an excellent chance to network with the crème de la crème of the sustainability world.

And while I might be a little biased, it comes straight from the horse’s mouth:

“The best thing that the 2degrees Awards have done is to introduce me to a couple of new contacts, such as Global Action Plan. We ran a session with Trewin Restorick on social value together with Hazel Blears as a direct result of coming in contact over the Awards," says Social Enterprise Mark founder Lucy Findlay, who won Supporting Player of the Year at last year’s event.

If you didn’t enter this year’s awards, you can still get involved — voting is still open, so let us know who you think deserves the sustainability crowns for 2014. There are plenty of categories to vote on — from Social Value, Internal Engagement and External Communications, to Supply Chain Management, Built Environment and Sustainability Champion of the Year (with the latter including individuals who have been the real driving force behind great change).

And don’t forget Personality of the Year: Matt Damon, Vivienne Westwood and Russell Brand are all up for nomination.

Those who vote will be entered into a prize draw for the chance to snap up five tickets for them and their colleagues to attend the glitzy Awards Ceremony taking place at Wembley Stadium in London on July 9!

And whether you’re inspired by the nonprofits or the celebs, learn from the entrants and winners from this year, and perhaps you could be one of next year’s champs.

To see the longlist and vote for your winner visit https://www.2degreesnetwork.com/awards/vote/.

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