Monthly Archives: December 2012

    • 2012 in Review at Trophies2Go

      The Year in Review

      2012 has been an extremely busy year for Trophies2Go!  We recap each quarter of 2012 below…

      Jeff with the ARA trophy. Our highest achievement - the ARA Large Retailer of the Year.

      Quarter 1:  At the first of the year, we launched our Issaquah Trophy and Trophies2Go videos.  If you haven’t done so already, check them out on Youtube/AwardsGuru’s channel .  They were a blast to make, are fun to watch, and are great snapshots of our companies! In late January, Jeff, Tom and I attended the Awards and Recognition Association (ARA) Trade Show in Las Vegas.  The highlight of the show was when Issaquah Trophy & Awards, our local brand, won the Awards Industry’s highest honor, the' ARA Large Retailer of the Year'.  What a thrill it was for our company to win this prestigious award!  To end out the quarter, our Q1 ‘Awards for a Cause’ was Relay for Life for the American Cancer Society.  Thank you customers for supporting such a worthwhile charity!

      Star101.5 Weiner Dog Races - check out the awesome trophy!

      Quarter 2:  In April, our CEO Jeff Anderson won the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce’s Business Person of the Year.  Again, Jeff was humbled and excited to be honored with this award by our community!  The Social Media Madness competition was our focus in May.  While we didn’t make it to the second round of the contest, we ended in 6th place in our division, and more importantly, launched our Trophies2Go Facebook Page, Issaquah Trophy Facebook page, and our weekly blog posts. In June, we achieved a huge milestone; our  100,00th order!  The winner of this distinction went to Dickenson Elementary, in Redmond, WA.   Our 2nd Quarter ‘Awards for a Cause’ was SAMBICA, a local Christian Summer Camp.  July brought the STAR 101.5 Weiner Dog Races at Emerald Downs, where we sponsor the giant weiner dog trophies.  We love this event, as the dogs are hilarious!

      Our Staff Party. Check out our awesome t-shirts designed by Laurie for our staff party!

      Quarter 3:  The beginning of September brought our glass blowing Staff Party, complete with Trophies2Go t-shirt contest.  We had a great time playing games, creating glass art, eating BBQ, and having fun with each other!  Our 3rd quarter ‘Awards for a Cause’ charity was the Susan G Komen 3-Day Walk.  Not only did we raise money for the organization, but Janice and I also volunteered at the Seattle closing of this emotional and inspirational event.  September also brought Issaquah Trophy’s participation in ‘Splash Mob – The Ultimate Salmon Quest’, a Salmon Days event. Brent Naylor won a $100 gift certificate to Issaquah Trophy for visiting our showroom during Splash Mob.   Sammy the Salmon visited our showroom one afternoon, playing games and taking pictures with kids from the community.

      Quarter 4:  This fall we unveiled our newest exclusive product…The Honey Badger Trophy!   This little trophy doesn’t give a darn, he’s nasty and crazy!  December brought our Holiday Staff party, complete with chili cookoff and gift exchange.  Anne was the big winner of the cook off, with an engraved ladle as her prize.  At the party, Laurie was awarded Jeff’s “President’s Award” for being an unsung hero in the company.  We also awarded our 2012 Vendor of the Year (JDS Industries), Customer of the Year (Yvette Smith with T-Mobile) and Product of the Year (Monster trophies from Continental Awards).

      To recap the year, it’s been a busy one for all of us here at Trophies2Go.  Thank you doesn’t seem like enough to acknowledge all of the effort, teamwork, and hard work our staff goes through every day for our customers and our company.  Here’s to our Trophies2Go Team: Anne, Chris, Edzel, Janice, Jeremy, Julie, Laurie, Margene, Mika, Mike, Paul, and Tom.  You guys are the best, and we wouldn’t be where we are today if it wasn’t for your dedication, commitment and willingness to give your all every day!  Let’s put 2012 to bed and bring on a happy, healthy and prosperous 2013!

      Cheers, Jessica

    • End of the Year - 5 People to Appreciate

      As the holidays approach, life gets hectic, especially for retail industries.  Here are some ideas for planning meaningful recognition for your employees before the season hits.  Many companies host a holiday party for staff, including end-of-year gifts, awards and bonuses.  It’s important to consider who deserves recognition at this event.  Obvious choices include top performers, but also include less obvious choices as well.  Below are the five most important people to include at this celebration.

      End of year gifts Recognizing effort is especially important at the end of the year.

       1. The Overachiever

      This individual dedicates themselves to the organization.  They complete extra work without being asked and ultimately make your company money, so acknowledge them accordingly.

       2. Perfect Attendance

      No one likes employees that abuse their “sick day” privileges, especially when a deadline is looming.  Often another employee has to work double to cover the truant one.  It’s important to let individuals who never miss a day know how much you appreciate their dedication.

       3. Top Producers

      Top producers with outstanding sales deserve recognition at your event. The awards you give these individuals should be the most elaborate of the event.  Other staff will hopefully feel motivated to become next year’s recipient.

      4. Leaders

      Every group has a leader, motivating, inspiring, and teaching other members on the team. Give proper accolades to the leaders in your organization who excel, as they are ultimately the right-hand of your business.

      5. Unsung Heroes

      Recognize personal assistants, administrative assistants, janitors, and other professionals who make your life easier.  The janitor who changes the trash can and vacuums the office every night, the messenger who delivers express packages in time for a presentation, and the guy or gal who changes the sheets at a hospital or nursing home are the unsung heroes who make the organization run smoothly.  These people are valuable contributors to your organization and deserve to be acknowledged for all the deeds they do!

      Be thoughtful and creative with your recognition, as small gestures can bring great results.  Don’t let another year go by without saying thank you to those people who keep the company running smoothly.

      Cheers, Jessica

    • Employee Engagement - Not As Hard As You Think

      Are your employees invested in your company’s success? Do they believe that what they do makes a difference?

      Are your employees engaged?

      I read in a Gallup Poll (Oct. 2011) that 71% of American workers are “not engaged” or “actively disengaged” in their work.  That’s a huge number. These workers are not actively invested in their company’s success.  They’re just putting in the time, punching the clock. Even more surprising is that those most likely to be less engaged are workers with at least some college education or workers who are middle-aged (30-64 years of age.)  These are people who have been educated for a specific career and are most likely in the middle of their working careers.  And they are least engaged.

      The term Employee Engagement is getting a lot of play right now. But it’s really not all that new.  If you want to know if your employees are ‘engaged’, ask them if they like what they do.  Ask them what their strengths are and if they feel they are using those strengths.  If they really don’t know or have never given it much thought, help them figure it out. When a person is able to work to their strengths, they will be less stressed and more productive in their job.  Better yet, help them develop new strengths if that is something they’d like to do. This leads to greater employee engagement.   A bigger challenge could be what they need to feel more invested.

      Communicate with your employees.  That’s not new, is it?  Open communications is the only way each of you will know what’s going on.  An owner or manager needs to share the company mission and what role employees play in it. They need to give them feedback on their individual and team performance.  Employees need to ask for clarification on their roles, ask for support, communicate what they need to be effective in their job and provide feedback to management.  The employee is the person in the day-to-day operations and knows best how processes are working and which products are selling.  The manager needs to listen to this feedback and use this information to make process and product decisions.  And the company needs to provide an easy way for employees to communicate with each other, sharing the information needed so they can work together toward the company mission.

      Once employees have the right job or task or career, and once open communication exists and is used effectively, make sure that correct measurements, or key performance indicators are in place. Accountability is a key factor in motivation for any employee.  It’s very critical that the measurements reflect the employee’s responsibilities and that they are reported accurately.

      And if you want even more engagement and investment from your employees, make sure to use that open communication and those measurements in combination to recognize every employee for their contribution. Whether it’s quantifiable, such as a sales quota achievement, or more subjective, like the unsung hero, show employees how they have contributed to the organizations success. Show them in front of others, informally and formally.  The timing is perfect right now to do this.  The end of the year is a perfect time to recognize those employees who have performed well in 2012.  They’ll start 2013 more engaged and ready to go!

      Spend some time evaluating if your employees are engaged and involved.  Do they like what they are doing?  Are they using their strengths? Does open communication exist in your organization?  Be real about this.  Ask for honest feedback to see if others feel the same way you do. Are you measuring your employees on key factors that contribute to the success of your company?  Are you rewarding them when they perform well in these measurements? Use the answers to these questions to set a plan in place now.  Employee Engagement - not as hard as you think.

      Blessings, Anne

    • 2012 Product of the Year - Monster Trophies by Continental Awards & Trophies

      As part of our year end recognition, we award a “Product of the Year” to one of our best-selling, most outstanding awards we offer.  The 2012 winner is our “Monster” line of trophies by Continental Awards & Trophies.

      Our 2012 Product of the Year - Monster Trophies by Continental. This is one of our most popular trophies, with a 5-Star rating and tons of Facebook likes! Our 2012 Product of the Year - Monster Trophies by Continental. This is one of our most popular trophies, with a 5-Star rating and tons of Facebook likes!

      What makes these trophies exceptional?  First, they're different - very different. They’re also well made, durable, and versatile.  They are really fun and are a hit with most people with a Y-chromosome;  guys love them, both young and old.

      So what kind of monsters do we have?  We carry Hunky Soccer Monsters , Fierce Lacrosse Monsters , Buff Basketball Monsters , Ripped Baseball Monsters , Victorious Hulk Monsters , and Macho Martial Arts Monsters .

      Which one is my favorite?  It’s our Football Monsters , especially our Monster Fantasy Football Perpetual Trophy .  This trophy is not only one of our best sellers, but it has the most Facebook likes (60!) of any product we offer.  It also has a 5 Star rating from our customers, with raving comments.  As one of our customers puts it, “This is a quality trophy that combines the fun of FF (Fantasy Football) with a certain fictional quality to it. Ideal if you really want a long term reward in addition to a financial award.”

      Thank you Continental Awards & Trophies for offering this fantastic line of trophies to us!  We are grateful to all of our suppliers for their terrific products – if it wasn’t for them, we wouldn’t be in business!

      Cheers, Jessica

    • Trophies2Go 2012 Customer-of-the-Year

      We've been helping Yvette with recogntion since 2008.

      Congratulations to Yvette Smith with T-Mobile, our Customer-of-the-Year for 2012!

      At Issaquah Trophy & Awards / Trophies2Go we value our customers.

      We especially value customers who are positive, friendly, and fun to work with.  Each of us at Issaquah Trophy & Awards and Trophies2Go believes in the Power of Recognition and we love customers who understand the importance of recognition.

      We have been helping Yvette with her recognition needs at T-Mobile since early 2008.  As a company, T-Mobile believes strongly in recognition.  Here is an excerpt from their website:

      T-Mobile’s Award-Winning Culture

      “We're proud to be a company where shared values, teamwork, and dedication give every individual the opportunity to make a difference. We're also proud of our many “Best Place To Work” and “Top Employer” awards. These awards are made possible by the individual commitments of countless team members, working together to create a great work environment. Our employees deserve the recognition that comes with these awards, and we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to thank them and share these successes.”

      With this culture, it’s no wonder that they consistently earn Best Places to Work awards and World’s Most Ethical Companies awards.

      A big criterion for us in choosing our Customer-of-the-year is the fact that we look forward to working with them again.  We definitely look forward to working with Yvette, and chocolate helps!

      Congrats again to Yvette!

      Blessings, Anne

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    Trophies Awards