If you have any queries please contact Caron Kendall Categories Best new business Employee of the year Enterprising Business Business Person of the Year Young Business Person of the Year Real-Life Entrepreneur Training and Development Franchisee of the Year Networking Group of the Year Business Innovation Green Business Service Excellence Best E-Business Retailer of the Year Business Woman of the Year Community Business of the Year Olderpreneur Past Sponsors Mercedes-Benz of Bedford Wenta TaxAssist Accountants Bushwood Basepoint Luton Luton Borough Council Bullet Point Media Specsavers Knowledge Hub White Hart Press Bedfordshire Business Women Hilliers Solicitors FM Group World Alltech Park Woodfine Heald Mellows LLP Solicitor The Conservatory at the Luton Hoo Walled Garden The Mansion House Cowley Holmes Accountants Environmental Population Barclays Co-operative Bank Bedfordshire on Sunday Center Parcs Silvertoad George Hay SEMLEP Growth Vouchers Media Partners Bedfordshire on Sunday Official Photographer I am a portrait, lifestyle and wedding photographer, who loves to photograph mums-to-be, newborns, children, families, special occasions, commercial and corporate commissions. My style of photography is contemporary, with images that have a timeless appeal. My organisational and client relationship skills are based on extensive experience and expertise in project management, specialising in creative and technology environments, this enables me to put people at ease and capture the essence of my subjects. I have had a longstanding passion for taking unique and creative images of people and places, mainly inspired by past travels and explorations that have taken me from Europe to Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the USA, so I decided to share my creativity and enthusiasm by becoming a professional photographer. My studio has an informal, relaxed and friendly atmosphere and my style is natural and modern. Location shoots for lifestyle and portraiture sessions can be held either in your own home or your preferred outdoor location. I specialise in using natural light whenever possible. I love to capture real emotions so your portraits truly reflect your personality. I am a member of the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers and the British Professional Photographic Society. Based in Leighton Buzzard I travel throughout the UK, shooting mainly in Bedfordshire and surrounding counties. Enjoy looking at my work and I hope you can see I love what I do. Visit Ravinder Crone website. Rules of Entry Terms and Conditions The competition is open to all businesses based in Bedfordshire or companies that can prove the majority of their business is conducted in Bedfordshire Entrants must be sole traders or have less than 250 employees at the time of entering A sponsor cannot enter an award in the category that they are sponsoring Each category has different requirements in terms of length of time in business or age of entrant - please see individual awards for specific rules The comments made on your application form should be accurate to the best of your knowledge The Judges will be one representative from each of the sponsors and a judge from the FSB The Judges' decision is final Entrants must be available for consultation with the judges should the need arise By entering the awards you agree to partake in publicity of the awards including the use of any images taken Should a category not receive sufficient entries, it will be withdrawn from the Awards Ceremony The closing date for all entries is the 8th May 2014 Entries will only be accepted on the official entry form You may enter more than one category up to a total of three. Each entry must be submitted on a seperate entry form Results will be announced in local publications following the Awards evening Please note: Any financial information provided will be treated in the strictest confidence and will not be disclosed to anyone other than the panel of judges and its advisors. Top Tips A business award (gained either by winning the outright competition, an award category or just being a finalist) is an overlooked marketing tool which can highlight your company beyond the normal marketing routes. The information below is intended to provide general guidance on how to enter the FSB Bedfordshire Business Awards. Why should I enter? An award provides an opportunity to showcase your business to customers and suppliers. An award can provide credibility and status. An award can raise your profile, thus opening doors to new customers and suppliers. An award paves the way for considerable press coverage, otherwise perhaps out of reach. The press are always interested in stories of successful small businesses. An award will attract possible partners or investors. Including your staff at the Award Dinner has a great effect on morale boosting. Use it to say "thank you" for their hard work. Remember - your employees have helped you get there! Entering an award competition will help you focus on your business issues. This in turn usually helps your bottom line. A great networking opportunity. Guidelines to help you with your entry Ensure that your application is clear and concise. Remember the judges are looking at a considerable amount of entries. You need to make an instant impact. To start, closely review all the categories available and determine which is appropriate for your business. Ensure that you take time to complete your application form. A considerable amount of thought is needed when deciding which information tells the best story. Read the entry criteria and ensure that you understand what the judges will be looking for. Stick to it! Understand the category you are entering and tailor your information to suit. Evidence base everything you state. You cannot just state that you have achieved something, you must prove your statement. Ensure that you keep to the word count. If you are asked for 250 words, stick to it. Presentation is key. Do not hand write your entry. Remember to "market" your company. Include samples of publicity material, press cutings and other relevant material. Be innovative. If you are referring to your website, ensure that you include hard copies. Remember, judges will only be judging on the hard copy material you submitted. It is important to be able to evaluate anything that you have introduced into the business. Pinpoint how these changes have improved your profit, customer base, costs, staff recruitment/retention. Ensure that you measure any improvement. Don't forget to Showcase your business. Be proud of what you have achieved! Check your entry before submission, ensure all the relevant paperwork is included. Ensure that you meet the deadline date - you don't get a second chance! How to make the most of winning an Award Having won your Award, use this significant marketing tool to the maximum. Celebrate your success with your staff. A real morale booster! Remember, this is their win too! Thank everyone that contributed - customers, suppliers for their support. Get those press releases out quickly. Circulate far and wide. Don't forget the radio and TV. If you are not confident in writing press releases or contacting the media, make use of a PR agency. Introduce your press releases into your marketing material. Valuable asset! Ensure that any trade associations, business organisations (such as the FSB!) are sent information on your win. They may be able to use promote further for you. You may be asked to give a presentation or talk at events - accept any offers. This will raise your profile considerably. And once on the "speaker" circuit, you could be asked time and time again. Update all your marketing materials, sales material to reflect your award. Display prominently in public your Award Certificate and trophy! And last but definitely not least, make sure that you enjoy your success. You deserve it! You may also like 08 December 2017 Weekly Brief 50 – Friday 8 December 2017 06 December 2017 Record amount spent with small firms on Small Business Saturday 06 December 2017 Joint statement from business groups and TUC on EU citizens' rights 18 August 2017 Weekly Brief 34 – Friday 18 August 2017 25 June 2016 FSB pays tribute on Armed Forces Day 08 March 2016 What advice would you give women thinking of starting up a small business?