IN­SIDER TIPS

Comms MEA - - Commsmea Awards 2018 Update -

John Cur­tis-Oliver is man­ag­ing client part­ner EMEA at RP In­ter­na­tional, a provider of ex­ec­u­tive search, hu­man cap­i­tal and in­terim man­age­ment so­lu­tions with a spe­cial­i­sa­tion in the TMT space and a 20-year track record of suc­cess across the EMEA and APAC re­gions. Oh, and he’s also a Comms MEA Awards judge. Here’s what he has to say about the win­ners that have been able to stand out from the crowd:

The tele­coms sec­tor is at a cross-roads as the tel­cos seek to make sense of the op­por­tu­ni­ties and threats posed by the Fourth In­dus­trial Revo­lu­tion. In dis­cussing with the other judges over din­ner last year, we found our­selves near unan­i­mous in our as­sess­ments of the en­tries.

The gi­ants of the in­dus­try were rightly ac­knowl­edged for their lead­er­ship of the in­dus­try and the sig­nif­i­cant trans­for­ma­tion they have un­der­taken. Vir­gin UAE had just come into the mar­ket with a dig­i­tal value propo­si­tion which put the con­trol back in the cus­tomers’ hands. The UAE cus­tomers had felt the im­pact of their en­try and could see the po­ten­tial for dis­rup­tion. Vir­gin’s en­try into the mar­ket has ar­guably had a pos­i­tive im­pact on the cus­tomer ser­vice of the es­tab­lished op­er­a­tors.

Zain’s Ra­madan Cam­paign – Fight Ter­ror with Love – was per­haps the most mem­o­rable en­try and a bril­liant ex­am­ple of a ma­jor brand us­ing its po­si­tion in a pos­i­tive way to effect change. An­other en­try which stood out was Eric­s­son’s e-hub in the “Connecting the Un­con­nected” sec­tion. The so­cio-eco­nomic im­pact of this ini­tia­tive on a com­mu­nity with se­ri­ous needs is sig­nif­i­cant.

Al­though it did not win, I per­son­ally en­joyed Orange Egypt’s “Pri­vate Recharge pow­ered by Mahin­dra Com­viva” for its role in tack­ling so­cial change through tech­nol­ogy. This is a brave ini­tia­tive which will make a true dif­fer­ence to so­ci­ety. The projects have true im­pact on the com­mu­ni­ties they touch and to have the chance to give them added vis­i­bil­ity was a great priv­i­lege.

Judges tend to favour the en­tries which demon­strate true orig­i­nal­ity, dis­rup­tion and those which were more phil­an­thropic in na­ture. Equally, it is nice to see an en­try which shines the light on an un­sung hero from within the com­pany.

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