Things are looking great for this year's Precious Awards; we have some great sponsors, a lovely venue and some special judges including Sonita Alleyne, CEO of cross-platform production company Somethin' Else(which is the largest independent radio producer in the UK and a top ten producer of TV entertainment) and Marcia Williams, Head of Diversity at the UK Film Council.
Once again, it was really bought home to me why there is still a need for initiatives such as the Precious Awards.
A few days ago I was chatting to a female entrepreneur via MSN:
"Your name came up just the other day" I said,
"Oh really?" she asked, "Why?"
I explained to her that someone had nominated her or was about to nominate her for a Precious Award.
"Oh no" she said, “I am sure that there are other people out there more deserving than me. Maybe I'll enter next year."
This woman, lets call her Annie, has been running her successful business for about five years, she has a healthy turnover and is respected in her industry yet was reluctant to come forward for some recognition.
"I think the awards are great" Annie said, "I just don't think I am ready yet."
I was disappointed but not surprised. There are so many women of colour running successful businesses up and down the country, yet they feel unsure or nervous of accepting recognition.
The Awards are not just about celebrating entrepreneurs, they are about creating role models too. We are trying to create a legacy, where young girls and women are surrounded by the stories of successful women who look like them too. Where its commonplace to hear of a women of colour setting up her first, second or third business or heading to the top in corporate UK, and firmly believe that they can do it too.
That's what the awards are all about, the Precious Awards are about women like 'Annie'. So, if you know of a woman of colour, who is running a great business or is steering a leadership role within corporate UK, then nominate her today. Just head to: www.preciousawards.com