More than just winning an award
WINNING an award is always sweet. However, for the winners at the recent the Star Business Awards (SoBA) 2013, being recognised for their efforts as up-and-coming small and medium enterprises (SmEs) was more than just walking away with accolades.
For most, if not all, it was a learning experience – and the start of a journey for greater things to come.
“We realised that the SoBA Awards have very high expectations, and to be a winner means you really are a winner,” says Secret recipe Cakes & Cafe Sdn Bhd group chief executive officer Datuk Steven Sim.
the company was the big winner at SoBA 2013, after walking away with the “malaysian Business of the Year” award as well as two platinum Awards under the “Best in marketing” and “Best Brand” categories.
“SoBA has also given us a lot of recognition in terms of publicity and awareness. our employees have been motivated to perform,” Sim says.
He adds that he would definitely encourage other SmEs to take part in future SoBA.
“this is the best platform for SmEs to benchmark themselves against other industry players.”
SoBA pays tribute to SmEs striving to carve a niche for themselves in the world of business.
the awards aim to inspire and drive malaysian enterprises towards excellence and outstanding achievement.
For GA International Group Sdn Bhd, a first-time participant at SoBA 2013, the education group’s motto was always about “working hard without expecting anything.”
Winning the “Best in CSr” was obviously a bonus, says chief executive officer Zaliza Alias.
“Being a first timer to send an entry to any award, we learned that at GA International, we have actually been working hard enough sincerely without expecting any awards.
“As the work is now recognised and awarded, we take it as a mark for us to work even harder, smarter in strategy and at heart.
“We also learned that many people are inspired and motivated when GA International won the platinum in CSr and finalist in “Business of the Year”, and thus we now know that the story of our hardwork needs to be shared even more.
“We are inspired by others who won especially in the ‘Best in Innovation’. It inspired us to work harder in the innovation for children’s education.”
KAt technologies Sdn Bhd managing director mohamed roslan Ismail believes that SoBA is one of the best avenues to help SmEs measure their competitiveness against the best in malaysia.
“We take pride in winning this award as we are competing among the best SmEs in malaysia. It has given us a great sense of achievement as well as motivation for us to be better.
“SoBA provides a unique platform to build our brand through The Star’s extensive readership and coverage. the panel of judges was of high calibre, too, hence we had the confidence of being professionally judged and fairly awarded,” he says.
the mobile prepaid distribution company won a silver award under the “Best Innovation” category.
Sydney Cake House Sdn Bhd managing director Jenny Chuang says the whole company was excited, overwhelmed and thankful for receiving “Special mention” at SoBA 2013.
“It gives us that extra push that we have to do better from now on. At Sydney Cake House, we share the same value of integrity and quality, and it is very meaningful to us to have won this, even if it is just a ‘Special mention’. In fact this award motivates us to leap further and move forward,” she says.
Chuang says the company is now motivated to participate in future SoBA.
meanwhile, for thumbprints Utd Sdn Bhd, which walked away with a Gold award under the “Best Employer” category, chairman tam Wah Fiong says participating in the awards helps it compare notes with other companies for practical tips for enhancement.
“SoBA is reputable and is the top privately organised awards. We take part to benchmark our company so that we know where we are to bring further improvements.
“Winning will boost the morale of the company’s staff while losing will challenge the company to reengineer itself.
“there is the prestige that comes with the award. It reminds us to keep the standard and behave accordingly. We keep improving to maintain the honour,” he says.
For Nehemiah reinforced Soil Sdn Bhd, which is no newcomer to SoBA, being recognised for its achievements is still just as sweet, says chairman and founder Dr Nehemiah Lee Chee Hai.
“this is already the fourth time that we have participated in SoBA. It is worth the effort. the reward of media exposure is highly valuable. Besides, after assessing the company’s strengths and weaknesses, it brings into perspective what needs to be done to move forward.
“It helps the participants to know where they stand compared with others. In other words, it helps us to benchmark against others,” he says.
the reinforced soil retaining wall producer won a Silver award under the “Best in CSr” category.
Cleanpro Express Sdn Bhd, which is also no stranger to the awards, believes that the recognition it gets is worth it.
“this is our second time. We fully support such awards as this award is in line with the Government’s commitment to encourage local businesses to excel in not only their bottom line, but that it is at the forefront in anticipating the future needs of its people,” says executive director Freddie Lau.
the company, engaged in the self-service laundry business, was the Grand Winner under the “rising Star” category.
“Besides getting gratification for our hard work and perseverance, our history in participating and winning the Star Business Awards has helped us maintain our reputation as well as improving and strengthening our relationship among peers,” says Lau.
Serba Dinamik Sdn Bhd, an integrated engineering, contracting and maintenance firm, was the grand winner under the “Entrepreneur of the Year” category. It believes that all the efforts put in to build up the company has been recognised.
“It (SoBA) is viewed as a genuine evaluation of the respective companies’ achievements, free from monetary and political influence,” says group chief executive officer Dr mohd Abdul Karim Abdullah.
Triumphant win: Secret Recipe Cakes and Café Sdn Bhd Datuk Steven Sim rejoicing with the team after being announced Malaysian Business of the Year at SOBA 2013.