Megafest Awards cheerlead the industry –Matsika

by Editorial Team
4 minutes read

Most people know business awards as those glitzy ceremonies where leaders and companies are honoured for excelling in various categories and areas of business. Recently Business Events sat down with Dr Tafadzwa Matsika, the Chief Executive Officer of Megafest Holdings which organises the Megafest Business Awards to get an appreciation of the importance of the business awards and how the awards are organised.

Dr Matsika explained that the awards started off in 2008 as a business leadership initiative meant to appreciate, recognise, reward and cheerlead trailblazers in industry in Bulawayo. He highlighted that he was encouraged by his then mentor, the late accountant and economic commentator, Dr Eric Bloch, to come up with the awards. With time and due to demand, the initiative spread to Harare before going national. There are regional awards for the Eastern, Masvingo, Midlands and Northern and Southern regions.

Unlike other business awards, which have specific nomination times and usually culminate in the award night at the end of the year, Megafest Awards run throughout the year with the national awards being held in March annually except for 2020, when they were disrupted by the coronavirus-induced lockdown.

“Our year starts in April so as we are speaking right now there is a lot of adjudication that is taking place for other regions. Even the national awards in normal circumstances and environment would take place in March,” said Dr Matsika.

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The awards are divided into four main categories.

“We have categorised them. We have the leadership awards. We have got the women’s awards and we’ve got local government and parastatal awards so we cut across the whole economic divide. All these have got their own various modus operandi in terms of how they operate. So they all feed into the institution of the national awards but we have no specific time to simply say we have ended this and we are no now starting this. It’s an ongoing procedure.” he said.

Asked about the criteria used to select award winners, Dr Matsika indicated that candidates were nominated by the market irrespective of their social standing or the size of the company they work for.

“Anyone can win an award. We don’t just look at big companies or top executives. Even the janitor and even the messenger, if they are doing their job diligently, are entitled to an award. So we don’t discriminate in terms of how big an organisation is or how qualified in terms of education one is. Anyone can win an award as long as you are Zimbabwean, as long as you are doing your job very well and as long as people nominate you as doing a great job,” Dr Matsika said.

He however stressed that it was not a free for all process. Candidates had to be nominated and assessed for suitability.

“We have recognised people at one point who were very junior in their organisation and they were quite surprised. We don’t advocate for canvassing. You cannot nominate yourself. You have to be nominated by the marketplace, leaders, your customers, your colleagues, and everyone else and they have to justify before we put it to the adjudication committee to ratify and establish if it is true. People have to justify why xyz is eligible for an award,” he said.

Commenting on the importance of business awards, Dr Matsika highlighted that they were growing in importance locally and on the global marketplace.

“We are coming in as the cheerleaders of the industry – a cheerleader from a marketplace perspective. We are saying whatever you are doing you are not doing it to get an award. You don’t apply for a job so that you get an award, no. You apply for a job so that so that you can do it to the best of your ability. It is in the process of doing it to the best of your ability that an award then looks for you. It’s merit recognition. It goes beyond merit recognition. It means that the industry within Zimbabwe and outside Zimbabwe, the global village, are now simply saying before you apply anywhere else, have you been recognised at home and by who?” he responded.

He underscored the importance of awards that are given by internationally recognised organisations.

“There are quite a number of institutions that give awards. The international community needs to be able endorse and simply say we tally and go along with this and this. We are quite excited that the international community is quite happy and excited about the Megafest Awards. That endorsement alone is good for one’s career, good for branding good and for growing organisations as well. So that is the importance of the Megafest Awards.”

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