What Does It Mean to Win a Queen’s Award?
The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise, as referred to in England, are the most prestigious form of endorsement and recognition that any company in the U.K. can earn. According to the official website of the British Monarchy, “The entry process is rigorous and highly competitive, with a success rate of around 20% each year. The winners are announced annually on April 21st, the birthday of Her Majesty The Queen.”
Three categories of awards are open to nominations each year, including:
- Environmental Sustainability
- International Trade
Few companies make the cut in terms of winning any of these award categories, and a very small handful has ever been honored with awards in multiple categories.
Spink & Edgar is one such company that can claim multiple awards: one for innovation and another for sustainability.
Here in the States, we do things a bit different than they do across the pond in the U.K. After all, we’ve only been in existence for a couple of hundred years. It’s easy to understand how a country that traces its heritage back to the Middle Ages might have a slightly different approach to business.
In the U.S., for example, we elect a president to lead our government, but we generally feel that our president should remain impartial in terms of showing any favoritism toward specific American businesses. Especially when it comes to formal recognition that could result in economic gain for the company earning those kudos, we Americans tend to see a conflict of interest that shines unfavorably on the president’s public image – which is probably why there are no “President’s Awards for Business” in our country.
In England, however, this sentiment is not shared in the same way. Unlike in the U.S., the Queen of England is a cultural icon that embodies the very core of national and cultural spirit for her country. She is not elected, nor is she restricted to an eight-year maximum time slot in the public spotlight. Holding the role of a monarch in Great Britain is a lifelong role that enables a much more intimate, literally matriarchal relationship to develop between the people and their Queen “mother”.
Nevertheless, with such privilege and power comes supreme responsibility and integrity as well. To lose the trust of the people is to lose the power of influence, and cultural irrelevance is the British equivalent of what we Americans would correspond with impeachment.
The Queen of England takes her job very seriously, and (unlike the “temporary” role of president) she isn’t about to swayed by financial incentives when it comes to publicly recognizing the few British companies that she feels are truly helping make the world a better place to live.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]