I’m one of the finalists at the inaugural All Things Business Northamptonshire Business Awards 2018.

What does it mean to me to be shortlisted? Of course, it’s a big deal. But it’s not just a big deal for me, it’s a moment to celebrate for our entire team and to recognise the talent of Northamptonshire.

It comes as we celebrate Novacroft’s 20th year, so it’s extra special. To me, it’s real recognition that the work we do at Novacroft, where I’m part of a capable and dedicated team, is truly making a difference.

My Novacroft journey has taught me that kindness is key. To be fit for business, you have to make space for time and wellbeing and be kind to yourself and others. It’s true, I love technology – I’m fascinated by AI and I think that’s got a huge part to play in the future. Today we need highly adaptive, creative people in order to embrace things like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robotics and to ensure lengthy careers rather than careers that might have a short shelf life as they’re overtaken by tech. But human emotion, kindness, is something that can’t be replaced by technology and something that I believe will always be essential to success as a business leader and as a team.

Starting Novacroft, I based the business on core elements tech and people, and that holds true today. We’ve had enormous success and we’ve overcome challenges. The people have been the constant energy and support. Together, we spot opportunities, seize them, maintain the ability to see clearly and keep calm. We look after each other – we care, we collaborate we’re kind and we have fun. The entrepreneurial essence I started the business with twenty years ago well and truly lives on.

Such a lot of that spirit of entrepreneurship has come from Northamptonshire. The county has the creative and adaptive people we need in abundance, and located at the centre of a growth corridor, it’s little wonder that businesses are flourishing.

So this award nomination is proof that people are what drive success. It’s proof that  kindness is vital. It’s evidence that Northamptonshire’s people are capable of amazing things. More than anything, it’s proof that building a great team can make great things happen.

Being a finalist at this year’s Northamptonshire Business Awards is something that has only been made possible by a true team effort. It’s for everyone that is and has been a part of Novacroft.