Awards Critera

North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2013

Standard criteria for ALL entries (with the exception of the “Key Woman” Award)

ALL nominees must display evidence of the above criteria, in addition to the specific criteria for each category entered.

The Key Woman Awards must be an employee or supporting Director of the organisation and NOT the owner. The Key Woman is open to women in a senior position playing a key role in the transformation, development or growth of a business or organisation.


Category criteria

The Susan Dobson Award for Entrepreneurship

This Flagship Award is given in honour of a truly remarkable entrepreneur, Susan Dobson. The Award, sponsored by The Susan Dobson Memorial Fund, is to recognise a woman who, over the last 5 years or more, has achieved outstanding success in creating or growing a new or existing enterprise. The winner will have vision, enthusiasm, leadership and a stubborn refusal to be dissuaded from her chosen path!

What the judges are looking for:


Best New Business

This Award will go to a woman who has launched a new venture with passion, enthusiasm and an unwavering desire to succeed. We are looking for a woman who started trading less than 2 years ago, with a great idea and who looks destined for long term success.

What the judges are looking for:


Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Vitality, ambition and determination are important in every business. This Award is for the Young Entrepreneur of the Year, under 30 who can add talent to the equation. We are delighted to recognise the talents prevalent in the young people of today and are keen to showcase their successes and support growth in this sector in the future.

What the judges are looking for:


Key Woman

This Award will go to a woman who works within any organisation and has assisted the businesses growth, development and strategic direction. This award has been created to recognise those women who are not neces\rily business owners, yet have made a huge impact where they work.

What the judges are looking for:

• A key woman working within any organisation
• A key driver in a business at management level
• Able to demonstrate how their position, actions and drive, has made an impact within the business for which they work

Best Small Business

This Award welcomes entries from all businesses with less than 50 employees. The entrants will demonstrate strong brand values and clear evidence that the business is moving forward as well as excellent customer service. On-line small businesses are eligible for this category but may be better suited to the ‘Best use of Technology’ category.

What the judges are looking for:


Best Social Enterprise

The North East Social Enterprise Partnership is pleased to sponsor an Award which recognises women who combine strong entrepreneurial skills with a positive social mission. These are women who combine entrepreneurial spirit, with the ability to shape and spot opportunities and who know how to make a difference.

The ideal candidate will play a leading role in a successful social enterprise with social objectives, whose surpluses are reinvested for that purpose, rather than being driven by the need to maximise profit for shareholders and owners.
The judges would expect to see evidence of a strong social responsibility which could address social, economic, educational, or environmental issues.

What the judges are looking for:


Best Creative Business

The number of new and developing creative businesses in the North East is expanding rapidly. Whether it be marketing, design, photography, literature, drama or jewellery design, pottery, dance or visual art, a growing number of women entrepreneurs are building thriving businesses through their creativity.

The path to a successful creative business, however, is a challenging one. Through this award we hope to recognise and celebrate the achievement of a woman entrepreneur who has demonstrated innovation, good business practice and determination to succeed through their creative business.

What the judges are looking for:


Best Home-Based Business

This Award was introduced in 2009 to recognise and celebrate the ever-increasing number of women turning towards home-based entrepreneurship. These women often have to overcome additional barriers such as isolation, separating work from personal life and being stereotyped as ‘hobbyists’.

The winner will have shown great self-discipline, determination and passion to create or develop a successful home-based business, overcoming these barriers, and demonstrating a successful work/life balance.

What the judges are looking for:


Best Use of Technology

Technological innovation is the hallmark of many successful businesses – and there are few companies for whom technology isn’t essential to strong business performance.

The Best Use of Technology Award will go to the woman who has demonstrated exceptional success in using business technology to create a significant competitive advantage in any business area.

What the judges are looking for:


Best Retail Business

Sponsored by Barbour, this Award welcomes entries from all retailers or franchisees trading for 2 years or more. The entrants will show a strong financial performance, store innovation and most importantly, excellent customer service. Strong brand values and clear evidence that the business is moving forward will also form part of the judges’ criteria.

This Award recognises the entrepreneurial spirit, achievements and long-term ambitions of those in this fast-moving and highly competitive sector.
Online retailers are eligible for this category, but again may be best suited to the ‘Best Use of Technology’ category.

What the judges are looking for:


Best Woman in International Business

UKTI are delighted to be sponsoring this award for businesses operated by women, who are based in the North East of England and are involved in import, export, outward investment or inward investment and who meet the eligibility criteria. The Award will go to the woman who the judges feel have achieved outstanding achievement in international trade. Winning the award will allow you to reflect on your achievements and acknowledge those who have helped you achieve this.

This Award is open to any woman-led business in the North East, of any size or sector that is actively trading overseas. The organisation must meet the following three eligibility criteria to enter the awards:

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