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Final chance to enter the prestigious third annual Rising Star Awards

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The closing date for entries for the prestigious third annual Rising Star Awards has been extended until end of April 2014 thanks to an overwhelming interest and amount of entries received this year. The Rising Star Awards is part of a programme that was developed to publicly recognise inspirational and passionate young talented people (between the ages of 28 and 40) who contribute in an encouraging manner to the future of the nation.
Says Laura Barker, MD of BlackBark Productions: “Due to the fantastic response this year, we’ve extended the entries until end of April in order to allow as many young people to participate as possible. To date, we’ve received 230 entries, with many asking for an extension date, which we’re happy to oblige.”

Barker explains who these individuals are: “Rising Stars are polished, brilliant talent with tremendous promise and who excel for reasons that go far beyond their technical abilities alone. They make things happen, are highly committed to achieving goals, innovate very rapidly, and create a great deal of value for companies and themselves, when their talent is spotted and harnessed.”

There are eleven categories that can be entered for the Rising Star Awards covering a broad spectrum of different professions within business specific sectors. These include Banking & Financial Services, Energy & Chemicals, Entrepreneur, ICT, Logistics & Supply Chain, Media & Marketing, Mining & Industrials, Professional Services, Manufacturing & Retail & FMCG, Public & Private Service, and Tourism & Hospitality.

“The response this year has been overwhelming. It’s fantastic to see so many South African companies and young people support the promotion of talent. The most popular category so far is the ICT sector with over 50 entries, but we’re still searching for more Rising Stars in the Manufacturing & Retail & FMCG, Tourism & Hospitality, and Logistics & Supply Chain categories. Anyone who feels they fit the criteria should enter and not miss out,” says Barker.

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She adds that the Rising Star Programme is far more than just an awards ceremony, stating: “The programme will establish a living community of young South African talent that will be developed, mentored and provided with necessary platforms for development and communication. This will enable them to become role models, opinion leaders and the inspiration for other future South African talent. In short, the programme will nurture these organisational and national assets who are set to play a key role in shaping the country and our continent.”

These objectives will be achieved through the Rising Star Summit, which follows the awards, and Rising Star Network. The Rising Star Summit brings together the Rising Star community of winners, HR and talent practitioners, learning and development service providers, and organisation leaders. The summit provides the opportunity to discuss ideas and generate mechanisms and engagements that will enable the ongoing identification, recognition and development of this critical organisational and national asset. The Rising Star Network is a closed network for the Rising Star Awards finalists, judges and mentors to provide ongoing support and learning.

The Rising Star Awards is supported by big name sponsors, including (amongst others) ArcelorMittal, Business Connexion, CEB, Standard Bank, Hilton Worldwide and Sasol, who have been on board since the establishment of the programme three years ago. Says Gys du Toit, Principal Specialist Talent Architecture: Sasol Group Human Resources: “The Rising Star Awards is an ideal platform to showcase South African talent that has the potential to make a difference. Sasol invests significantly in education and skills development beyond our own needs. We’re proud to make a contribution, together with industry, business partners and key stakeholders, in developing and nurturing South African talent so that together, we shape tomorrow.”

Those who wish to enter (either themselves or someone they would like to nominate) have until Wednesday, 30 April 2014 to do so. Entry forms can be obtained by completing a short assessment request form at www.risingstar.co.za. The 2014 Rising Star Awards finalists will be announced in July, followed by the awards ceremony on 28 July (Hilton Sandton, Johannesburg). Former Springbok rugby player Ashwin Willemse has been confirmed as MC for the event.

For the Rising Star Awards, a stringent assessment process is followed, culminating in a panel interview with leading talent and industry specialists. All steps in the process are monitored to ensure good governance, integrity and rigour are applied, and that high standards are adhered to.

Like the Facebook fan page at www.facebook.com/RisingStarSA and follow on Twitter @RisingStarSA.

For more information, visit www.risingstar.co.za.

The 2014 Rising Star Awards is sponsored by, amongst others, Business Connexion, Sasol, Standard Bank, Hilton Worldwide, ArcelorMittal and CEB.

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