I’m a runner. I didn’t used to be but in the last year I’ve discovered that I actually enjoy it. It clears my head and frees those elusive endorphins that make you feel better about everything.

In my journey from novice to regular runner I’ve discovered a wealth of information to help you run faster, avoid injury and keep you on track, including the ubiquitous App. So now before a run I start up Strava to track how far I run and how fast. And the best part is when I finish my run and see that I have a trophy. Strava rewards me when I complete a segment in a top time. Now I know I probably need to get out more but I do get excited when I get a trophy!

The beauty of all the running apps is that not only can you benchmark your progress but celebrate success and share your achievements with friends.

But do we do this enough in our professional lives?

In my professional life I’m in the midst of awards season. A lot of my time is taken up with writing submissions and presentations to judges. It’s my equivalent of a running app.

It takes time and effort to enter the awards but I think it’s worth it. So often we go about our day job and get wrapped up in all the stresses and strains and we forget to reflect on what we did well.

Entering awards makes you reflect on your project. What went well? What did you do that was new? What lessons did you learn and how did you share that with other people? Regardless of whether you win or not the process itself gets people to stop and celebrate their success as a team. And just like the running apps you can share that success with your peers.

I’ve been writing awards submissions longer than I’ve been running and what I’ve learnt is that when I approach a project now, I think like a judge. I’m thinking about the award criteria and it helps me to plan. Have I set objectives? What can I do that’s innovative? How will I share best practice? How will I measure the success of my project? I plan to be successful right from the start a project.

So I encourage everyone to find an award for their industry and give it a go.

I’d also love to hear other people’s stories of how they celebrate success.