New award set to scout SA’s stellar business women

As a sponsor, alumnus and judge of the 40 Under 40 Awards, Dani Cuff is pushing for more women to enter awards and, in the process, build greater self-belief and feel more comfortable about self-promotion.

CEO Dani Cuff founded her leading talent solution company at just 26 years of age. Today, she heads a team of 25 skilled professionals servicing the recruitment and HR needs of many of the State’s leading private companies and government agencies.

This year, Cuff’s company Harrison McMillan is sponsoring the inaugural ‘Inspiring Female Leaders’ Award in the InDaily 40 Under 40 Awards, and will also sit on the panel of judges alongside other leading local business people.

She says she is particularly honoured to be associated with this new category as it reflects her philosophy of encouraging ambition, boosting confidence and inspiring new female business leaders to push the boundaries and realise their worth, now and into the future.

She notes that statistically, men are more likely to enter awards than women, with applications split a hefty 80/20 in men’s favour.

“By having a specific award category, we’re hoping to encourage more women to enter and celebrate their achievements,” says Cuff.

“I’ve gone out and spoken with some really inspiring women and I’ve said, you’ve got to do this.

“When they reply ‘No, I don’t self-promote’, my response is always: why?

“These women are doing amazing things.”

And while gender-specific awards such as this clearly promote the profiles of women, they don’t do so at the expense of men. Rather, adds Cuff, they encourage women to put themselves out there, self-promote and hopefully inspire the next generation to step up and do the same, in greater numbers.

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Personally, Cuff says immersing herself in women’s awards such as the Telstra Business Women’s Awards and in female networks wider than her immediate company and friends gave her “unrivalled access to role models and mentors that I would otherwise not have connected with, nor realised I needed.”

Indeed, she had a similar experience with the InDaily 40 Under 40 Awards.

“As a 2021 alumnus, my network rapidly expanded and both I and my business benefitted from the ‘cross-pollination’, the sharing of advice and ideas and the referrals that flowed from this experience.”

She adds that while winning overall awards is a great personal and professional feat, sometimes not winning can be just as valuable.

“As a non-winner, in women’s awards, I know the benefits way exceeded simply winning: being part of the awards offered an excellent opportunity to reflect and reset while also providing a platform from which to boost both my personal reputation and that of my organisation, setting us apart from the crowd.

“The experience alone has greatly helped me in my entrepreneurial journey that can best be described as tough but so exciting… and I am confident applicants to the ‘Inspiring Female Leaders’ Award will feel the same.”

Enter the InDaily 40 Under 40 Awards

Learn more about Harrison McMillan

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