Businesses that go the extra mile to benefit society are being reminded to get their nominations in for London’s top responsible business gongs.
The call was made with a month to go until nominations close, and as past winners described the increase in business, reputation and trust they’ve experienced as a result of being a winner in the Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards.
The scheme is held every year by the City of London Corporation to recognise firms which build strong community relationships, tackle disadvantage or inequality, promote inclusion or boost skills.
The deadline for this year’s Dragons – which include a new award recognising innovative or creative responses to the coronavirus pandemic – is 1 December.
William Russell, Lord Mayor of London, said: “It’s very clear from speaking to past winners that businesses who win one of the coveted ‘Dragons’ experience a real boost to their reputation, community relations and morale.
“I’d encourage firms with successful, original or innovative responsible business programmes to get their nomination in now, so we can shine a light on the work they’re doing to make people’s lives better.”
Past winners include construction giant Mace Group, which won an award last year for its ‘Volunteering for Better Communities’ initiative, in which it and its suppliers donate time or money for community projects such as revamping a charity cafe or providing after-school clubs.
A spokesperson for Mace Group said: “Winning this prestigious award has earned us more work, improved our reputation as an organisation that does the best for the communities we live and work in and proven our commitment to service excellence.”
David Miller Architects (DMA) was a winner in the 2018 Dragons for its work experience scheme, which saw five students – a quarter of those who took part – offered permanent jobs.
Fiona Clark, Practice Director, said: “Winning a Dragon is like winning an Oscar in the word of responsible business. Being recognised for our commitment to inclusion and diversity is really important to us and our clients, and the Dragon Award endorsement has brought both credibility and prestige.”
Meanwhile, the charity IntoUniversity, which helps disadvantaged young people access higher education, was a Dragons winner last year for its partnership with financial services giant UBS.
Hannah Thomas, Senior Corporate Partnerships Manager, said: “Since winning a Dragon Award, our partnership has gone from strength to strength, working together to help young people achieve successful futures. Now more than ever, improving social mobility needs a collaborative, cross-sector approach.”
This year, the Dragon Awards are being organised for the first time by Heart of the City, the City Corporation-funded charity which supports hundreds of small and medium-sized enterprises with their responsible business programmes.
Businesses can see the full list of categories and nominate themselves for an award online at dragonawards.org.uk.