Individual Leader of the Year Award

Category Description

This award is open to organisations or individuals wishing to enter someone who has shown outstanding leadership in promoting responsible and ethical practices within their chosen field and organisation. This can include individuals in any position in the organisation, from CEO to administrative assistant – but they do need to be able to demonstrate that they’ve achieved really significant, game-changing impact. So while this does not remotely rule out a winner emerging from a more junior role, they would need to have achieved an impact disproportionate to their direct responsibilities.

Key achievements will include one or more major initiatives in purpose-driven sustainability, in which the individual leader has played a significant role. The judges will assess the extent and range of achievements and must see evidence of how the individual has led within their team or organisation; the degree of creativity and innovation that has been shown in taking forward the initiative(s); the extent to which the entrant has shown leadership within their sector and has influenced colleagues and third parties; and the personal commitment demonstrated by the entrant to be a voice for positive and sustainable business practices.

Judges’ consideration will be given to champions of employee well-being, environmentalists, charity activists, diversity & inclusion, savvy business leaders, technological masterminds and all-rounders.

There is no specific time scale for this award, however, the individual must not have won this award before.

We request a total word count of 1500 words +/-10% (excl. supporting docs). Any confidential data will be treated as such and only shared with the judging panel.


Judges will be looking for evidence of the following points within the supplied application form (weighting percentages in brackets):

  1. The individual leader’s innovation and creativity in their approach to purpose driven leadership; (20%)
  2. A demonstration of an ongoing commitment to work across disciplines, at all business levels bringing colleagues along on the sustainability / social impact journey; ensuring projects and initiatives are collaborative long-term efforts; (25%)
  3. Evidence of success of the initiatives developed by the individual with verifiable data to support the reach and impact with staff, in communities / partnerships, and for sustainability in general; (25%)
  4. The individual’s efforts to ensure core business functions are at the heart of the organisation’s sustainability strategy; (20%)
  5. The individual’s long-term passion for sustainability, ethical behaviours and community engagement and whether they dedicate personal time and resources in support of social responsibility. (10%)

PLEASE NOTE: The criteria above are different to the questions in the application form. You will need to follow the application questions; cross-referencing these with the criteria to ensure you’ve captured them within your application. The criteria are followed by the judges in order to compare all entries in each category like-for-like, Please ensure you register / login to AwardStage (Opens 1st Feb), select the category and export a PDF copy of the questions. Some category application questions differ. The application questions will be available four weeks before entries open, so if you wish to get them ahead of time please email us.

Are we eligible to enter?

Our awards programme is open to all organisations of any kind… companies large and small, charities, not-for-profits, social enterprises, NGOs, membership and accreditation organisations and government departments including local and county councils. We are all about rewarding sustainability practice – in all its forms. So if your organisation is making a difference, directly or indirectly to people and planet, you’re eligible.

We don’t just recognise businesses that are operating responsibly, or supporting / partnering with worthwhile causes. We also actively encourage entries from organisations that have been specifically set up or adapted to offer a product or service that tackles a social or environmental problem.

Our category descriptions and criteria have been written to guide entrants on what content should be detailed in their entries. However, we do not expect square pegs to fit in round holes… Some of your business activities or dedicated programmes might not fit entirely with any one specific category. In these cases, the descriptions and criteria are open to an element of interpretation and rest assured that our judges will still take into account entries that are strongly aligned with the overall context of the category.

If you have any concerns about the suitability of your entry, or would like to discuss your activities in more detail, we are here to help. Give Karen a call on 07813 718541 or email us.