One of the downsides of the implosion in traditional news media is that celebratory stories get little or no coverage.
The general public, who in my experience love to hear of clever and innovative New Zealand companies therefore have only a minor awareness of both the scale and importance of the Hi-Tech Awards, whose winners were announced a couple of weeks ago in Wellington.
Now, given the IT savvyness of the audience, there was probably quite a bit of social media chat to do with the awards. How much this disseminates into the wider public; who knows.
All of which is a pity when you look at the facts.
Firstly, any function that pulls a crowd of over 700 people must be doing something right.
Given that over 150 organisations entered the awards, obviously there’s plenty of these companies relying on brainpower rather than muscle to generate wealth.
Equally, any company that receives one of the top nine awards, will be proud to hang it on their wall, and to mention the fact in any dispatches they make to their own customers.
What is most apparent though is, being in the same room as the owners and workers in these smart businesses, is the almost bottleable sense of creativity, possibility and ‘let’s make this happen’ that collectively exists.
In talking to any of the people at the awards’ dinner it is abundantly clear that they think beyond our shores and of satisfying a customer they have clearly pictured in their minds.
The diversity of this thinking is also reflected in the width and breadth of business entries.
Look at the range of businesses who were finalists for the top award
- Xero- cloud accounting platform
- Serko – NZX-listed cloud software firm
- ARANZ Geo – geological softare
- Shotover Camera Systems – helicopter, boat and vehicle camera stabilisation platforms
All of these companies solve problems, headaches for their customers.
They have no shortage of competition, but thrive because of the competition.
They are exciting, future-focused entities that are obviously great places to work.
They’re cool, or hot – both at the same time.
It is just a pity wider New Zealand isn’t as aware as they want or need to be of these clever people.