Fun and laughter took centre stage at the Re:locate awards gala dinner and presentation ceremony.
Nearly 200 guests from the world of international corporate relocation – including HR professionals and suppliers – gathered at the prestigious Institute of Directors in London for a gala dinner to celebrate the winners of this year's eighth annual Re:locate awards.
Speaking before the dinner, Fiona Murchie, managing editor of Re:locate, noted, "In the fast-paced global mobility environment, it is great to see entries from around the world, as well as new sectors and specialists coming onto the scene. There will be companies here from across the relocation spectrum that are rising to opportunities, supporting growth, overcoming challenges and driving through change."
"We look forward to learning who takes away the prizes."
Between them, the 12 Re:locate Awards recognised individuals, teams, policy and innovation, with a choice of categories for HR and service providers. The high-calibre shortlist reflected the many different types of organisation involved in relocation.
For a list of our fabulous winners, click here.
The evening unfolds ...
Setting the scene for the celebrations was a champagne reception with live music from the Robert Reid Trio, who played jazz arrangements of the works of the great American songwriters, as well as Latin and blues.
Host and keynote speaker Stephanie Davies joined guests to celebrate success and good practice in all aspects of relocation.
As founder of training organisation Laughology, a former stand-up comedian, and an expert on the psychology of humour and health, Ms Davies was perfectly placed to fill her keynote with fun and humour and reflect the current hot topics of happiness and wellness.
As a regular on BBC Radio, bestselling author, and frequent contributor to popular television programmes like Trisha, The Bank of Mum and Dad, Heaven and Earth, and Stand-up Jenny, Stephanie Davies is a consummate communicator. Guests responded enthusiastically to her interactive keynote, which combined the latest thinking from neuroscience and psychology with real-world business application. Davies showed how the power of laughter can inspire corporate audiences and engage global teams in a multigenerational workforce. She also provided the group with innovative practical tools to take back to their companies.
Ensuring that the presentation of the trophies went with a swing was our master of ceremonies, Laughology's Dave Keeling, a professional actor, comedian, speaker and trainer who has worked extensively in theatre and television. His credits include Blood Brothers in the West End and EastEnders for BBC1.
In her introduction to the awards presentation, Fiona Murchie said, "At Re:locate Global, we are helping to shape the global mobility agenda. We know that global managers and HR professionals face tough challenges as their organisations enter new markets around the world, but these are exciting times, too, as economies start to pick up.
"As one of our judges, Gordon Kerr, director of the Employee Mobility Unit at Morton Fraser, so aptly put it – and he is a lawyer, so he should know! – 'The Re:locate Awards have provided all sectors of the relocation industry with a unique opportunity to demonstrate all that is best about our industry: an opportunity that has been grasped by an astonishing variety of leading national and international firms. As a judge, it has been a genuine privilege to discover the extent of innovation and creativity delivered by the entrants. Ultimately this benefits our industry and our clients.'
Following the presentation ceremony, many guests took the opportunity to continue the celebrations and enjoy another hour of networking, to the accompaniment of jazz classics.
We are very grateful to this year's sponsors – BridgeStreet Global Hospitality, Cheval Residences, Graebel Relocation, Skyline Worldwide and Smith Stone Walters – for their support, which is vital to the success of the Re:locate Awards.
We also thank the Association of Relocation Professionals (ARP), the European Relocation Association (EuRA), FOCUS and the Relocation Users Group (RUG), all of which provided professional endorsements.
As in previous years, entrants' submissions were subjected to rigorous scrutiny by a team of independent judges. We thank them for their expert, impartial input, and for giving their time so generously.
On this year's judging panel were:
We also thank everyone who entered for supporting excellence in relocation and raising the profile of our profession.
Find out more about the awards in the Summer 2015 issue of Re:locate magazine (out June). Our special awards supplement will include case studies on the winning entries.