Ignition is an independent, women-owned SME, headquartered in Bristol and specialising in the design and production of exceptional and sustainable exhibitions, events and experiences around the world.
Although sustainability is not our core business, it is the core of our ethical approach. We are leaders within our sector in our approach to sustainability and were the first in our industry to be certified with an ISO 20121 in Sustainable Events Management. In addition to achieving The Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development, Ignition was also awarded Sustainable Organisation of the Year 2020 at IEMA’s Sustainability Impact Awards, against very stiff competition.
Why did you apply for a Queen’s Award for Enterprise?
As a business, our objective from day one was to take a stand against the industry’s predominant ‘build and burn’ culture. We seek to share and instil best practice with others, helping spread sustainable expertise, insights and initiatives to clients, suppliers and others within our industry. Our efforts are targeted towards ‘UN SDG 17, Partnerships’ to share knowledge and expertise to support the achievement of sustainable development.
Our CEO provides regular local and national congress keynote talks to educate and engage with stakeholders on sustainable initiatives, encouraging similar emission- and waste-reducing activities and reducing the industry’s carbon footprint. We hope to see the people and companies we have reached through keynote talks and key learnings instil our recommended best practices.
Our Chairwoman is a Fellow at the RSA and shares key learnings/best practice to help educate member businesses about balancing people, planet and profit. She is also an advocate for the circular economy and serves as Non-Executive Director for International Synergies, a position she has held for the past 12 years. The organisation strives to lead the world in industrial ecology solutions for a low carbon, sustainable economy.
We applied for a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development because we believe it to be the ultimate endorsement of our sustainable ethos. For a British business to receive royal recognition is a great honour and, in the global marketplace in which we work, the award certainly adds prestige and validation to our standing and credibility.
Effect on business and staff
The Queen’s Award creates a strong platform from which to leverage our future business vision, which is to seek out other businesses who share our values and ethics, to work with both as clients and as consultants or suppliers. For our staff, the news of the award was an incredible morale booster, with a strong halo effect for all those associated with the business.
Advice for Future Applicants
We would encourage any British business to apply for a Queen’s Award. The prestige alone has a powerful value on the international stage and offers both reassurance and endorsement, indicating that people are dealing with a company with the highest standards and a profound ethical commitment.
Our greatest tip would be to research thoroughly what is needed in order to be considered for the award, including examining past winners, and to be prepared to spend time on that and further subsequent actions or statistical investigation, so as not to apply prematurely.
Find out more about Ignition on their website: https://www.ignitiondg.com/
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