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Rewarding achievement

There’s nothing like a shiny new award on the desk to motivate and reward staff. So what’s on offer for the shopping centre sector?


wards have become a well- established tool for motivating staff, recognising success and

building corporate profile, and although the real estate industry was relatively late to the party, centre owners and operators now have a busy calendar of awards programmes they can enter. And in addition many larger organisations run their own internal events.

A suite of awards products are a key

part of BCSC’s offer to its membership, culminating in the industry’s biggest event – the BCSC Golds – held every December at London’s Grosvenor House hotel. Having grown at one stage to 1,700 people which stretches even the capacity of the capacious Great Room, attendance has now settled at around 1,200. The BCSC’s expert judges roam the

country to assess the best new and refurbished centres, but over the years the programme has expanded to take in the best established centre as well, recognising centres that have stood the test of time. This also has the merit of maintaining interest – and giving the industry something to celebrate – at a time when the development cycle is in one of its periodic troughs. But to complement the Golds, BCSC has developed parallel

awards products to recognise the other disciplines that go to make a successful shopping centre. The Purple Apple marketing awards, the ACE customer service awards and the Town Centre Environment awards have all become established events in their own right. Entries have just closed for this year’s Purple Apples and the

rigorous assessment process is now beginning. A panel of marketing experts judge the entries on their creativity, execution and effectiveness and it is the fact that shopping centre marketers are judged by their peers that gives weight to the process. And the Purple Apples have now become a far bigger enterprise

than just an annual awards event. A team of mentors – many of them former winners or judges – are now on hand to advise shopping centre marketers on how to present their work. This is

not just about drumming up entries for the awards – it plays a valuable role in spreading best practise through the industry. A rigorous judging process is also

a hallmark of the ACE awards, which recognise the best customer service initiatives in UK shopping centres. Every entry receives two mystery shopping visits where the centre will be audited on customer service, social media and WiFi provision and sustainability. The mystery shopper visits take place

at different times of the day to ensure that both busy and off-peak periods are assessed. The short-listed centres in each category are then visited for a third time by the judges.

Shopping Centre’s own SCEPTRE

Awards – now in its 12th year – has also carved its own niche in the industry. What makes SCEPTRE Awards stand out is that they tend to recognise the people and teams rather than companies. This year’s awards dinner takes place at the Dorchester Hotel on 19 June. Following some detailed market

research with past entrants and sponsors,

the format of the SCEPTRE Awards is being revamped this year to bring in new categories. The new categories this year are: Marketing Manager of the Year (small, medium and large); Energy Management Award and Waste Management Award; Town Centre Manager of the Year; Operations Manager of the Year; Irish Manager of the Year and, for the first time, the SCEPTRE Grand Prize which will be awarded to the Managing Agent or Owner Operator that achieves the highest aggregate scores in the shortlisting and judges’ rankings. Entry forms for this year’s SCEPTRE Awards are now available, with a closing date in April 2012. And for those who want to be sure of a place at the Shopping Centre industry’s most exclusive night out, bookings are now being taken for the Awards Dinner on 19 June.

Find out more: For more information, please contact the author: February 2012 SHOPPING CENTRE

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