We want you to take the plunge, go for the gold - and try to win the 2002 Plastics News Processor of the Year Award.
The award, now in its seventh year, gives North American processors a chance to gain worldwide recognition. The competition has grown since Bryan Custom Plastics won the first one in 1996. Typically, 25-30 companies are nominated each year. A team of judges from the Plastics News editorial staff - the same people who cover the industry each week - has the difficult task of choosing finalists and the winner.
The benefits are many, even if your company isn't crowned the winner at a reception Jan. 27 at Plastics News' 2003 Executive Forum in Phoenix. Contestants have told us that trying for the award was a valuable exercise that made them scrutinize their own operations.
The award covers nearly every aspect of running a business. Judging is based on financial performance, quality performance, customer relations, technological innovation, employee relations (including safety performance), industry and public service, and environmental efforts. A few years ago PN began adding some drama to the award by naming the finalists, while keeping the winner's identity secret until the award ceremony.
Plastics News visits each finalist and names them in a story - this year it will appear Jan. 6. The winner will be profiled in a front-page story shortly after the Executive Forum. That sort of recognition can build employee morale and generate business leads from the global readership of PN and its PlasticsNews.com Web site.
Suppliers, customers and anybody else can nominate a company; processors even can nominate themselves. Nomination forms are available online at www.plasticsnews.com/award. Forms also will be at PN's booth at upcoming trade shows. Or contact Bill Bregar, the senior reporter coordinating the award, at (330) 865-6158, or e-mail [email protected] The deadline for submissions is Oct. 1.
We realize that this year business conditions are very difficult. We hope that doesn't deter you from trying for the award. Financial performance is an important criterion, but it's only one of seven areas we consider. A well-rounded, solid company has a good chance to get to the finals. This year, for the first time, award sponsor Ernst & Young will help our judges sort through the financial area.
Some processors may be concerned that the award takes too much time. Keep in mind: While we do want people to cover all the criteria, this is not a college term paper. Quality of the data, not quantity, will get to the winner's circle in Phoenix. Companies usually name a lead person who coordinates the effort with key executives, covering personnel, quality systems, community service and other areas. Call us if you have questions.
The information you submit remains confidential. Sensitive financial data is used only internally to help with the judging.
For us here at Plastics News, the award is a lot of fun. Of course we hear from well-known companies, but we also learn about interesting newcomers. Some of those firms end up in the paper as news stories. Cascade Engineering Inc. won last year.
As you might expect, most of the nominees are injection molders, but we really would like to see more diversity of processes, including extruders, blow molders, thermoformers and rotational molders.
So give it a try; you could become PN's next Processor of the Year.