2016 SBWYYC Awards
What defines a "small business"?
The Calgary Chamber defines a small business as a company with fewer than 100 full-time employees.*
* Based on Industry Canadas definition of a small business
Who is eligible to apply for a Small Business Week Calgary award?
To be eligible for any of the Small Business Week Awards, applicants must:
- currently be operating a business in Calgary for a minimum of 12 months as of July 1, 2016 (excluding Emerging Growth Award)
- have fewer than 100 full-time paid employees
- not have won the award previously they are applying for
- ATB Small Business of the Year Award
- BDC Emerging Growth Award
- Breakout Business Award
- Innovation Award
- Indigenous Entrepreneurship Award
- Customer Service Award
- Community Impact Award
- Environmental Stewardship Award
- People's Choice
Presented by ATB Business
The ATB Small Business of the Year Award is presented to the Calgary small business who has demonstrated significant business achievement (especially in the past three years) and sustained financial growth and performance.
Applicants must demonstrate:
- A proven track record of growth and profitability
- A commitment to corporate citizenship
- A potential to be a leader and show future growth in Calgary’s business community
Applicants should also demonstrate above average performance on several of these factors:
- Outstanding leadership that empowers staff and management through HR practices
- Groundbreaking achievements in bringing innovation to market
- Continuously striving to exceed customer expectations and is creative and innovative around customer experience
Presented by BDC
The Emerging Growth Award is presented to the new emerging small business that has experienced rapid growth and profitability in its first 1-3 years of operation, and shows the potential for future growth and commercial success. In order to qualify for this award, the company must have begun operations no earlier than September 1, 2013.
Applicants should demonstrate significant growth and potential through:
- A business plan or concept (provide as attachment in application)
- Outlining business potential, and their ability to be a leader or disrupter in their industry
- Proof of increasing revenue
- Demonstration of expansion in terms of increase customers, employees or locations
Shortlisted companies will be asked to provide the Chamber with proof of financial growth which could include income statements, pro-forma balance sheets and annual cash flow statements. These will be kept entirely confidential and will be destroyed after the judging process.
Presented by McLeod Law LLP
The Breakout Business Award is presented to the Calgary small business that has a proven track record of breakout performance, business growth and profitability in the last 3 years. This company shows strong growth and financial performance by having an exceptional understanding of their competitors, customers and the markets in which they operate in. This company has a solid foundation in place for continued commercial success.
Please note that finalists can have been in business for any length of time, but has shown strong growth within the last 3 years.
Applicants should demonstrate significant growth and potential through the following:
- A strong business plan or concept (provide as an attachment in application)
- Demonstrates excellence in their field and differentiation from competitors
- Expansion or exponential growth in gross revenue and staffing in consideration of profitability
- Effective leadership or management
- Significant business potential
Shortlisted companies will be asked to provide the Chamber with copies of their last three years financial statements which could include income statements, pro-forma balance sheets and annual cash flow statements. These will be kept entirely confidential and will be destroyed after the judging process.
The Chamber will be publishing affirmative statements about the applicant’s eligibility for this award, and therefore final applicants shall be asked to acknowledge in writing that they understand that the Chamber is relying on accuracy of their representations.
Presented by Servus Credit Union
The Innovation Award is presented to the Calgary small business that has shown groundbreaking achievements in bringing innovation to market. This could include: improving work processes, business concept development, product creation, operational effectiveness or customer engagement. This award celebrates the ideas that have the greatest impact in shaping a sector or an industry.
Applicants should demonstrate how their innovative approach has:
- Contributed to significant growth
- Improved processes
- Disrupted the industry
All applicants will be required to provide the following information:
- A description of the company’s creative concept and products;
- The market it serves and the business competitive advantage
The Indigenous Entrepreneurship Award is presented to an Indigenous small business that has demonstrated excellence in business achievement and sustained financial performance. Additionally, the Indigenous Entrepreneurship Award is designed to celebrate commitment to community enhancement.
- Be a small business operating in the Southern Alberta region
- Be able to provide evidence of at least 51 percent Indigenous ownership
- Have a proven track record of business success, corporate social responsibility, and profitability
Presented by Air Canada
The Customer Service Award is presented to the Calgary small business that is dedicated to continuously striving to exceed customer expectations, deliver industry leading standards of service and is creative and innovative around customer experience.
- Outline how their customer service strategy as contributed to an exceptional customer experience
- Give clear examples how their customer service strategy has resulted in positive customer reviews or recognition
- Give examples of how their customer service strategy has enhanced customer engagement
- Demonstrate how their customer service strategy has resulted in a more motivated and engaged staff
- Outline how their customer service strategy has improved operational excellence
Presented by Yellow Pages
The Community Impact Award is presented to the Calgary small business that is seen as a leader in finding ways of doing business while doing good for the community. This business has invested in the community and sees community investment as a core part of the companies’ values.
Please note that this award is open to businesses from all industries. Applicants can be social enterprises, but don’t have to be. Applicants do not have to be companies that work exclusively in community engagement.
Applicants should provide/demonstrate:
- An outline of the company’s community impact strategy that demonstrates how business operations have a positive impact in the community
- Measurement of the social outcomes of the business
- A clear long-term commitment to the community
- A list of the specific activities the company and employee engages in that have a positive impact on the community
The Environmental Stewardship Award recognizes a Calgary small business that has demonstrated commitment and has been influential in the area of environmental sustainability through leadership and the integration of environmentally responsible practices into their corporate culture.
Please note that finalists do not have to be an environmental service company, where the core business function is focused on the environment, but the company can simply be a business that has a long-term commitment to environmental sustainability. An example of this could be a hair salon that has a huge focus on the environment, and therefore only purchases environmentally friendly products, initiates community projects focused on the environment and use bullfrog electricity. This company would qualify for this award.
- Demonstrate a long-term commitment to environmental sustainability, and show how it has been embedded into the company’s corporate culture
- Show how the company’s leadership has provided support for environmental policies in the business, community or industry
- Provide examples of key environmental projects that have been implemented in the business
- Provide examples of how the effectiveness of these projects have been tracked and measured
- Show how the company engages stakeholders, clients, and the community in activities that support environmental sustainability
Presented by News Talk 770
The People’s Choice Award is presented to the Calgary small business that can demonstrate they have the engaged and loyal support of their community. As the only Small Business Week Calgary Award determined by public vote, this small business must show that their community thinks they go above and beyond.
Successful business are those that will engage their audiences, use innovative marketing to drive votes, and generally hustle to win. If that sounds like you, go for it!
- To win this award, applicants must gather as many votes as possible during the voting period