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Becky Norman


Managing Editor

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The 2021 Culture Pioneers Awards: it’s time to showcase your achievements

We're now open for entries! Find out more about the key dates, categories and how you can enter

The Culture Pioneers Awards is officially open for entries and we’re looking for innovators in HR, L&D, inclusion and wellbeing who can inspire our community with their ability to create meaningful culture change. 

The aim of the awards is to celebrate and honour the people professionals who have pushed the boundaries of traditional workplace initiatives and achieved results in the things that matter for the people that matter. We aren’t simply looking for ‘best in show’. No matter how big or small your achievements, we want to hear about your culture change journey.

Supporting our mission is our judging panel, a talented cohort of industry experts tasked with selecting the finalists and winning entries for each category. Our 2021 judges include Perry Timms, Chief Energy Officer of PTHR, Shakil Butt, Founder of HR Hero for Hire, Gethin Nadin, award-winning psychologist and Laura Overton, award-winning industry analyst and speaker. Find out more about our full judging panel here.

The awards are absolutely free to enter and both teams and individuals from UK businesses can take part in the programme!

Our 2021 categories

This year’s awards programme has four categories for you to choose from. Simply decide which area you and/or your team excels in and get started.


The Culture Pioneer of Wellbeing Award is for organisations that are consistently evolving their employee wellbeing strategy and taking a holistic approach to support the mental, emotional, financial and social needs of their workforce.

  • Are you fostering an environment that cultivates energy, psychological safety, resilience and adaptability?

  • Are your business leaders striving to create a truly ‘human’ organisation?

  • Is your team really listening to employee feedback and delivering positive change to improve employee wellbeing?

If your organisation is making progress in some of these areas, take part in our wellbeing category and share your story! Find out how to enter here.


The Culture Pioneer of Inclusion Award is for organisations who are creating meaningful, sustainable improvements in workplace inclusion and belonging. 

  • Has your organisation created a psychologically safe environment in which every employee feels respected and valued as their authentic self?

  • Do you have an inclusion strategy that is visibly owned and championed by your leadership team?

  • Does your organisation collate data about people demographics across a range of intersectionalities to establish a baseline?

Even if the changes you have made to improve diversity and inclusion are small, we still want to hear about them. Submit your entry here.


The Culture Pioneer of Learning Award is for businesses that are cultivating a culture that proactively supports the way that their organisation learns, adapts and grows.

  • Are you taking steps to build business critical skills and capabilities across the organisation?

  • Does your business value curiosity, knowledge-sharing and employee-driven learning?

  • Is your team nurturing a learning culture that aligns with organisational needs?

You may only be partially through your journey, but we still want to hear about the progress you’ve made so far. Start your entry today.


The Culture Pioneer of Innovation Award is for companies that are embracing innovative practices to ensure the business and its people continue to thrive, particularly in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic.

  • Are you delivering business value and tackling some of HR’s big-ticket issues in innovative ways?

  • Do employees have the freedom and scope to innovate across different areas of the business?

  • Did your business respond to the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic with creative flair and novel solutions?

If you’ve thrown out the rule book and moved onto exciting things, the innovation category is for you. Begin your entry.

Key dates

The closing deadline for entries is 23 July, which I am sure will come around quickly, so we encourage you to get started on your entry soon. (You can always save your progress and log back in to work on your entry at any time before the deadline.)

Finalists will be announced on 18th October, followed by a virtual awards night on 18th November to celebrate the winners, with their achievements showcased to our community of 159,000 people professionals. 

We aren’t simply looking for ‘best in show’

If your business has created opportunity out of crisis, or introduced an initiative that has made a real, tangible difference to your employees, then get involved. Join us in our mission to celebrate the Culture Pioneers of 2021 and submit your entry today! 

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Becky Norman

Managing Editor

Read more from Becky Norman

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