Business awards that high­light pos­i­tive side of news

Yorkshire Post - Business - - BUSINESS / NEWS - Mark Casci BUSINESS ED­I­TOR @york­shire­post

Press

THE BBC drama se­ries has gen­er­ated a lot of at­ten­tion in the past few days for its de­pic­tion of two ri­val news­pa­pers.

In one cor­ner is a left-lean­ing broad­sheet, in an­other a pop­ulist tabloid.

Both are wrestling to keep up with an ever-chang­ing me­dia mar­ket that in­creas­ingly val­ues en­ter­tain­ment over con­tent.

Much of the at­ten­tion cen­tred around the moral­ity of its char­ac­ters. One tabloid hack comes un­der colos­sal pres­sure from his ed­i­tor and news­desk to de­liver a story on a foot­baller’s sui­cide, de­spite the man­i­fest tur­moil it is caus­ing the fam­ily of the de­ceased.

In an­other scene the same ed­i­tor forces the res­ig­na­tion of a well-re­garded cab­i­net mem­ber over lurid rev­e­la­tions about her pri­vate life.

The lack of de­cency dis­played to­wards real life peo­ple once again brought up the ques­tion of press reg­u­la­tion and the be­hav­iour of its prac­ti­tion­ers.

More than any­thing, the di­a­logue cen­tred around the in­ces­santly neg­a­tive na­ture of the stories lead­ing their agen­das.

I con­sider my­self lucky that I work for a news­pa­per nowhere near ei­ther of the two ti­tles por­trayed in terms of the way we are re­quired to be­have and the tone we set.

Lay­ing in­for­ma­tion be­fore the pub­lic that is of in­ter­est to them is part of any de­cent ti­tle’s DNA but in its more than 260 years

The York­shire Post of history has sought to act as a cham­pion of the re­gion and high­light its best prac­tice.

In re­sponse to any­one who may char­ac­terise the me­dia as neg­a­tive I in­vite them to look at the qual­ity of the com­pa­nies high­lighted in the short­list for this year’s Ex­cel­lence in Business Awards.

From the shores of the coast­line, to its mar­ket towns, from its for­mer in­dus­trial heart­lands to its bustling cities, there is ev­i­dence of high-per­form­ing com­pa­nies large and small in this list.

I could not be prouder of all of the firms who have made the short­list.

I can as­sure them all that the process was not an easy one and there are some truly out­stand­ing firms who nar­rowly missed out on be­ing cited this year.

The awards have been go­ing for more than 12 years and for me serve a vi­tal func­tion.

This week­end marks 10 years since the col­lapse of Lehmen Broth­ers, ar­guably the most high-pro­file ca­su­alty of the fi­nan­cial cri­sis which came per­ilously close to col­laps­ing the world econ­omy.

The en­su­ing re­ces­sion and the aus­ter­ity pro­gramme that fol­lowed made life in­cred­i­bly hard for many busi­nesses for a long time.

Things were only just start­ing to get back to nor­mal when a se­ries of po­lit­i­cal earth­quakes took place which de­liv­ered us Don­ald Trump into the White House, took us on a path to­wards ex­it­ing the Euro­pean Union and left us with a Gov­ern­ment with a tiny ma­jor­ity and an opposition de­ter­mined to pur­sue an agenda more left wing than has been seen in gen­er­a­tions.

These events have dom­i­nated the news agenda for the last two years, and with good cause.

How­ever, if we dwell on the neg­a­tives, rather than take stock of the big pic­ture, we set our­selves on a path which can scarcely lead any­where pos­i­tive.

If we do not ac­knowl­edge our strengths and po­ten­tials we run the risk of talk­ing our­selves into a down­turn. If we do not high­light strong en­trepreneurs we en­dan­ger the chances of in­spir­ing the next gen­er­a­tion to start their own en­ter­prises.

And if we do not show­case the great eth­i­cal work be­ing done by firms large and small to pro­mote di­ver­sity, em­power staff, cre­ate jobs and forge paths to new mar­kets and op­por­tu­ni­ties we are sell­ing this great re­gion short.

This is not wor­thy of this great county, its history, its peo­ple and its fu­ture.

With that thought in mind I pay tribute to the more than 220 firms who en­tered this year’s awards and all those who make this econ­omy as great as it is.

On one fi­nal point, I must add that in my nearly 20 years of work­ing in news­rooms, I have never seen one with kitchens as clean as those de­picted in

Press.

Ac­cu­racy is ev­ery­thing you see.

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