Is an industry award more than an ego boost?

Recognition of your achievement was not arrived at by throwing a dart at the wall, and you have joined an elite group of leaders, says Adrian Schofield, VP, IITPSA.

Johannesburg, 28 Sep 2015
Read time 2min 40sec

You have been badgered into attending an industry function, maybe a breakfast or a dinner which may be part of a conference. Considering your workload and priorities, you were seriously thinking of giving it a miss but your arm was sufficiently twisted to ensure you showed up on the day, says Adrian Schofield, VP, IITPSA.

You've enjoyed the meal, caught up with the industry gossip with the peers around the table and the MC announces that it is time for the XYZ Award for exemplary leadership or spectacular performance in your field. As the citation is being read out, you come to the alarming realisation that you are to be the recipient of the award.

Even if you are a willing contender for the award and have gone through the selection process, there is still the moment of surprise. Then the congratulations from those nearest you in the auditorium, the walk to the podium to receive the award and the desperate hunt in the recesses of your mind for what you thought you should say at this moment. Are you embarrassed? Are you basking in the glow of appreciation? Do you launch into an Oscars-style thank you to every relative and colleague you can remember? As you return to your seat and further applause from those around you, do you think about what you wish you had said?

At that point, it's a good feeling. But what is the real significance of receiving such an award? As you reflect on the road that led to this recognition, should you wonder how you appeared at the top of the list? What were you doing right, that your performance stood out from others who might be considered? What are you going to do with it - put the trophy on the shelf or the certificate on the wall? Or shove them in the cupboard and carry on as before?

First off, remember that the recognition of your achievement was not arrived at by throwing a dart at the wall. You have been subjected to an evaluation process that ensures a fair examination of your track record and a credible acceptance of your worth when the award is announced. So, take pride in what you have achieved. Then, consider how you can leverage this new-found fame into a platform for your future contributions to the industry and as an exemplar for others to follow. You have joined an elite group of leaders. Continue to lead.

IITPSA presents two awards in partnership with ITWeb: Visionary CIO, and IT Personality of the Year. It also presents the Distinguished Service in ICT Award in partnership with EngineerIT. Find out more about the awards. Read about the 2014 awards here.

To book a table for the prestigious IITPSA President's Awards breakfast on 12 November 2015, contact Lerina Nel on 011 315 1319 or

Editorial contacts
IITPSA Tony Parry (011) 315 1319
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