Recognising success with real intent
The annual Bridge Awards (watch here) have come and gone. Usually, in our post-awards blog, we engage a run down of all the excitement and enjoyment we had the opportunity to indulge in. And certainly, there was the usual amount of champagne, cigars, showmanship and shenanigans – all embodied in our live YouTube broadcast, which included music acts from 2022 Eurovision Song Contest entrant Gaute Ormåsen (one of the yellow wolves), and a visit to one of Norway’s most venerated glass artists, who also designed and created our unique new ‘Business Partner of the Year’ awards.
But this year, in our post-event blog, we’re not going to focus on the style and surface-level details of our celebration, wonderful though they were. Instead, we want to dig down into the substance of it, and examine why we have our celebrations, and why they really matter.
We’ve talked in previously blogs about how enjoying what you do is as or perhaps more important than what you do, how you do it, or why you do it. And that is certainly true. So our celebrations are always at least in part about finding pleasure in our work.
But what our celebrations are really about is the idea of community. Specifically, our Business Partner community. They are about celebrating the fact that different organisations with their own particular objectives and ways of working can come together to achieve something bigger than the sum of their parts, and engage in coordinated, collaborative activities that produce net benefits all around; a win for us at Bridge, a win for our business partners across the globe, a win for our customers, and in turn, a win for their customers – the audience at home.
Why we have business partners
Since our inception, Bridge Technologies’ business model has been built around forming relationships with strategic business partners, and using these to achieve globalised distribution within the broadcast and telecommunications markets. The benefits of this strategy have been manifold.
First and foremost, it means that when we approach potential customers with our product, we’re not delivering a product pitch in isolation, abstracted from its role within a wider broadcast setup. When our business partners approach potential customers to discuss the benefits that our monitoring probes can bring, nine times out of ten they are doing so as part of a wider proposition; perhaps as a full greenfield install, or a multi-side coordinated upgrade. As our business partners use their expertise to guide customers in making complicated, coordinated infrastructure decisions, they are more able to communicate the role that Bridge Technologies probes play as a part of a holistic broadcast operation.
Which leads into our next idea: integrating our product into a wider infrastructure sale doesn’t just make it easier for customers to understand our product, it also means that Bridge is able to offer a more comprehensive service – from consultation and installation on through to training and ongoing maintenance. It also means that during installation, our customers have the potential to integrate monitoring right from the start – adhering to a key mantra of ours: ‘build it in, don’t bolt it on’. Not only is this more convenient and less disruptive for broadcasters, but – more importantly – systems which have integrated monitoring from the start are able to better optimise the potential of their network as a whole, and get the most in terms of efficiency, effectiveness and functionality from our probes.
Of course, another important advantage is that with business partners, all of these activities above are carried out in the direct context of the customer; speaking in their language, understanding their operational context, being sensitive to the market environment and the competitive forces that play upon them… Using business partners ‘on the ground’ in each country means that they can ‘translate’ – not just linguistically – the benefits of Bridge products directly into the context of the customer. Of course, this isn’t just good for our customers, it’s good for us; it’s been a method to secure global growth in a relatively short period of time, and with minimal investment in penetrating new markets: our business partners have done all the hard work for us, often having achieved market penetration and maturity before starting their collaboration with us. This means that, through confidence in the established reputation of our business partners, customers can also be confident in us by extension.
And that aforementioned idea of ‘translation’ goes two ways. Because the use of business partners allows us – through them – to liaise with clients on a much closer level, then it means that when they have ideas or requests for how the product could be developed to even better suit their needs, business partners are able to extract this information and communicate it to us. The net result is a product development strategy that almost perfectly balances proactive and reactive growth; predicting and anticipating market needs in general, whilst tweaking elements to ensure the product fits perfectly with our individual users.
And why we celebrate them
It can be seen from the long list of benefits above that the use of a business partner distribution strategy massively benefits both us and the end customer. Which means the answer to ‘why we celebrate our business partners’ is pretty self-evident: when they do so much for us, it’s vital that we in turn do as much as we can for them. And to us that means going above and beyond merely creating favourable contract terms; it means creating a support structure that allows them to do their job to the best of their abilities, giving them the resources they need to attract and convince customers that they are the right (wo)man for the job, and we are the right product to do that job with. Through our regional sales managers, we work to foster close, strategic and lasting relationships with our business partners, always seeking to maximise mutual benefit.
And of course, key to all this is celebrating their efforts: recognising and rewarding their commitment to both us and our (collective) customers.
And that idea of celebrating effort – not just achievement – is crucial to our Bridge Awards philosophy. Our biggest award of the evening, the ‘Business Partner of the Year’ award, is based on measurable outcomes. And whilst our winners each year are truly deserving and put quite incredible levels of work into the sales they secure, we also have to recognise that some of our BPs will benefit from working in markets where achieving big sales is a more tenable proposition; either because of the size, maturity, fragmentation or wider economics of the national broadcasting context. It’s for this reason that we developed our additional awards: ones that celebrate technological innovation, customer focus, strategic communication and other vital but less quantitatively measurable business elements.
So whenever you see our posts online of glowing faces, champagne held aloft and sparkly hi-tech stages and cameras in the background, be sure that we’re not just making an award show for the sake of it (even if we do love the excitement and energy of the process itself, and benefit hugely from the experience it gives us in truly knowing and understanding – on a direct level –the challenges that face our customers). No, the main reason is to try and communicate, in the best way we know how pleased, proud and privileged we feel to be working with such incredible Business Partners. Thank you, always, to them.
Congratulations again to all our award nominees and winners:
01 Innovator of the Year Award
1. Techtel – Australia 2. Satcab – Portugal 3. Meratech – UAE 4. Techex – UK
WINNER: SATCAB – PORTUGAL
02. Market Developer of the Year Award
1. Canal Cable – France 2. IBIS Instruments – Balkans 3. NorthCast – Chile 4. Techtel – Australia
WINNER: TECHTEL – AUSTRALIA
03. Service Excellence of the Year Award
1. TV-Connect – Austria 2. Canal Cable – France 3. Scansatec – Finland 4. VP Media Solutions – Belgium
WINNER: SCANSATEC – FINLAND
04. Technology Project Implementation of the Year Award
1. Teksys – New Zealand 2. Vietcoms – Vietnam 3. 2110 Solutions – US 4. Network Electronics – Japan
WINNER: VIET COMMUNICATIONS – VIETNAM
05. Communicator of the Year Award
1. IBIS Instruments – Balkans 2. Meratech – UAE 3. SHM Broadcast- Germany 4. Avicom – Brazil
WINNER: MERATECH – UAE
06. Bridge Choice Award
WINNER: JOKERTV – SPAIN
07. Business Partner of the Year
RUNNER UP – SHM BROADCAST – GERMANY
RUNNER UP – TECHTEL – AUSTRALIA
WINNER – TECHEX – UK