Don’t panic when facing awards deadline stress

In the News

It’s Monday, Jan. 9, 2023. You get to the office and open your weekly calendar and … Oh No! You put down the WBA Awards for Excellence Entry Deadline on Wednesday at 6 p.m., but forgot all about it.   Twenty-Seven entries need to be submitted in just over 48 hours.  

(Yikes!! I forgot about the WBA entries!!!) 

Don’t panic.  You’ve got this, but you’ll have to play it smart. Here are some tips on getting award-winning last minute entries in by the deadline:

First, this is a game of mind over matter. The items of utmost importance come first. So enlist as many people as you can to search out your audio. Don’t worry about uploading it yet. Just get it all into a series of clearly labeled folders and file names.   

(This seems like a lot of busy work. I hope it’s worth it.) 

You may find it best to start with the more complicated entries while you’re still fresh. These would be entries that require compiled audio or multiple cuts that will likely have to be edited before they are ready to send. Gather that audio first, then the categories with individual cuts.

(Oh man – we’re running out of time… its already 5 p.m. I’m beat and going home.)

You’re in a good place. Now that you have your main audio, go to each file and select your “winner clip.”   Don’t spend a lot of time if you feel you have a weak entry but need it for the points, but if you’ve got a great piece, be sure to find just the right representative clip. It will be worth the extra time when you win.

(Noon Tuesday. We haven’t uploaded a single entry. Maybe this isn’t the way to go.) 

Now that you’ve got the audio, go back through the entry criteria and create any narratives that are allowed.  These are critical in order for judges to have the context of your entry. You may know why that was such a great promotion or why the promo was a home run in your market, but those judges might not “get it.” Be sure to do those narratives, even though they take time. Save them in the same folder you’ve saved your audio clips. If you’ve got a teammate, one searching clips while one creates narratives is a great workload split.  

(We’re never gonna make it. I’m going home.)

Wednesday is reward day. Sure, you’ll be known as a procrastinator,  but you weren’t even in the game until today. All that’s left is your uploads. With everything all in one spot for each entry, you’ll be zipping through the categories in about 10 minutes each, or less. That’s a half day’s work if you enter every category.  

(Late celebration lunch. We made it!) 

You’ve made deadline. Now just make sure your calendar next year gives you an entry start date in early December. And don’t be late to the Awards Gala on May 6.

Good Luck!

–Tim Bremel, Big Radio, Janesville