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2021 Award Category Guide

1 July, 2021
2021 Award Category Guide | News | Pause Awards
Ann Nounce
1 July, 2021
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We have put together these examples of different themed category sets that you may find motivating for your business to enter.

Sustainability Categories

Extending on social good and sustainability categories is our commitment to award conscious business.

  • Circular Pioneer Award
  • You have Ethics Award
  • Work Sweet Work Award
  • Going Green Award
  • B-Good Award

Growth Categories

This selection of categories you could consider as part of your growth stage.

  • Hammer Award
  • Out of the Garage Award
  • Unexpected Twist Award
  • I Wish I’d Done That Award
  • Big Noise Award
  • Indi Award
  • Baton Award
  • Creative Genius Award
  • Underground Award
  • Exit Planet Award
  • Inside Out Award
  • Defiant Ones Award

Creative Categories

A small selection to reward the best idea to the masses.

  • Big Noise Award
  • Creative Genius Award
  • Inception Award

Emerging Stars Categories

For those who are behind the scenes, starting up and under 30.

  • Do You Know Who I Am Award
  • Underground Award
  • Prodigy Award

Excellence Categories

Top categories that award success.

  • Defiant Ones Award
  • The Hall of Fame Award
  • Inside Out Award
  • Hammer Award
  • I Wish I’d Done That Award

Ecosystem Categories

Great companies create great ecosystems, leaving no one behind.

  • Super Connector Award
  • Do You Know Who I Am Award
  • Indi Award
  • Baton Award
  • Work Sweet Work Award

Milestone Categories

Do you feel you’ve reached a moment for which you should be recognised?

  • Hammer Award
  • Out of the Garage Award
  • Super Connector Award
  • Baton Award
  • Inception Award
  • Inside Out Award
  • Defiant Ones Award
  • Exit Planet Award
  • Circular Pioneer Award
  • Unexpected Twist Award

Culture Categories

Is your company culture worth showing off?

  • Work Sweet Work
  • You have Ethics Award
  • Unexpected Twist Award
  • B-Good Award
  • Inside Out Award

Company Categories

These are a variety of company awards that can suit almost any initiative and stage of your growth.

  • Hammer Award
  • Out of the Garage Award
  • Unexpected Twist Award
  • I Wish I’d Done That Award
  • Big Noise Award
  • B-Good Award
  • Indi Award
  • Underground Award
  • Exit Planet Award
  • Circular Pioneer Award
  • You have Ethics Award
  • Work Sweet Work Award
  • Going Green Award
  • Defiant Ones Award

Individual Categories

Our individual categories help in personal development.

  • The Hall of Fame Award
  • Super Connector Award
  • Prodigy Award
  • Do You Know Who I Am Award
  • Baton Award
  • Creative Genius Award
  • Inception Award
  • Inside Out Award

While our award categories have funky names, Pause Awards, in plain language, honours business achievements through various stages of growth. So here are our ten new categories for this year that we think are super important, and unforgivingly essential.

Creative Genius Award (new)

For smart execution

This award recognises a person that created and implemented smart and sustainable creative or business strategies in the market.

Underground Award (new)

For early-stage mavericks

This award recognises an early-stage startup that has done well in its first two years. Incubator and Accelerator startups are mostly welcome to apply as well as anyone else that is just starting up.

Exit Planet Award (new)

For the best exit

This award celebrates the company’s final frontier, the exit or IPO and the new beginning. These milestones are worth more than just a gong.

Inception Award (new)

For visionary thinkers

This award recognises a person that came up with a transformative idea that can change the world for the better. No implementation is required; this is just an idea challenge!

Inside Out Award (new)

For unlocking hidden potential

This award recognises a person that unlocks innovation potential inside the company to deliver new value and change the world.

Circular Pioneer Award (new)

For making a difference

This award category recognises a company pioneering its circular efforts that demonstrate tangible projects by keeping materials in use for longer.

You have Ethics Award (new)

For the right values in life and business

This award category recognises a company promoting accountability, good governance, leadership in Corporate Social Responsibility and solving societal problems.

Work Sweet Work Award (new)

For a great workplace culture

This award recognises a company that has managed to improve or attain outstanding employee engagement, retention and satisfaction.

Going Green Award (new)

For delivering impact and scale (new)

This award recognises a company actively leading and delivering impact and scale through sustainable efforts in clean energy, climate change, healthy environment, social and economic justice.

Defiant Ones Award (new)

For new tech breakthroughs

This award recognises a company that defines the future of the industry they play in, such as tech breakthroughs that had a significant impact on customers in how they use it and how it improves their lives.

Where most other international awards shows have a plethora of sub-categories, we try to keep it simple at Pause Awards.

Instead of ‘Best of…’, our categories are for specific business achievements.

Hammer Award

For nailing it

This award recognises a company’s success on its own terms in the market. You are simply hammering away your success and leaving everyone behind.

Out of the Garage Award

For scaling globally

This award recognises a company’s global growth, expansion, and success. You can apply if you have taken a product globally or opened an office in another country.

Super Connector Award

For being the community champ

This award recognises a person for their significant contribution to the success of their clients or the community.

Prodigy Award

For being exceptional

This award recognises a young person (under 30) with exceptional qualities or abilities. Think of it as a young achiever.

Unexpected Twist Award

For a great pivot

This award recognises a person or company that has taken an unexpected pivot in their business or career. If you have a great COVID twist, let us know.

I Wish I’d Done That Award

For sheer brilliance

This award recognises a company’s simple and clever idea in a niche market that everyone else wishes they had done instead. 

Do You Know Who I Am Award

For the silent achiever

This award recognises a person that has been responsible for their company’s success behind the scenes.

Big Noise Award 

For media cut through

This award recognises a company that has delivered clever marketing tactics. 

B-Good Award

For a good business

This award recognises a company that has done well for the community and the world through its commercial practice. “It’s not how good you are; it’s how good you want to be,” said Paul Arden once.

Indi Award

For new and First Peoples

This award recognises a successful company with founders from Indigenous or ethnic heritage that has gained success in the market.

Baton Award

For the life-long mentor

This award recognises an experienced and trusted advisor or a mentor who elevated and provided guidance, motivation and emotional support to your career.

The Hall of Fame

For future builders

This award recognises a game-changer who paved the way by breaking new grounds and inventing new categories.


Pause Awards '22 entries are now open!
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Have dreams? Go get them.
Early entries end on 15 July, at midnight.
For the most ambitius and forward-thinking people.

Applications are now open


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Category tracks



Creating a safe and open space in which everyone thrives and the collaboration flows through all levels and titles with the power of the one team. The entries should demonstrate how the transformation has been achieved across core business functions, that have delivered a positive impact and growth for business, staff, stakeholders and customers. Judges will only refer to written entries during the evaluation process. No additional research will be undertaken, and for this reason, we recommend you give detailed and sharp answers.

Celebrating commercial effectiveness through success in the marketplace by leaving a dent in the universe, no matter what the size of the company. The entries should demonstrate the highest levels of expertise, leadership and vision in the application of their business strategies. Judges will only refer to written entries during the evaluation process. No additional research will be undertaken, and for this reason, we recommend you give detailed and sharp answers.

Standing up for your purpose and going beyond together as a team aligned on the single mission to positively impact the environment, people and community. The entries should demonstrate ideas intended to change the world; work which sets out to positively impact ingrained gender inequality, social imbalance or injustice. Judges will only refer to written entries during the evaluation process. No additional research will be undertaken, and for this reason, we recommend you give detailed and sharp answers.

Only awarded to a single entry in each category track, Grand Prix is the highest accolade in Pause Awards. To win the Grand Prix, the entire Judging Board must unanimously agree that the entry deserves the accolade of being the best in class.

​​Focusing on the productivity and elegance of execution to deliver impactful ideas to a market (or many) with the power to cut through the noise. Entries should demonstrate how the innovation and optimisation of the customer journey led to scaled consumer engagement and commercial success. Judges will only refer to written entries during the evaluation process. No additional research will be undertaken, and for this reason, we recommend you give detailed and sharp answers.

Elevating every voice in the ecosystem is not just important for its collective success, industry development but also for the future growth. The entries should demonstrate ingenuity which leads to the creation of new products and services, through leadership, by elevating the internal culture and communities they serve. Judges will only refer to written entries during the evaluation process. No additional research will be undertaken, and for this reason, we recommend you give detailed and sharp answers.


Categories


  • Diverse Co. (NEW)

    For nurturing an inclusive environment. This award recognises a workplace that has successfully and intentionally encouraged innovation among diverse employees.


  • Large team culture (NEW)

    For fostering innovation. This award recognises a workplace with over 1000+ employees that has outpaced their cohort in fostering a culture of innovation.


  • Medium team culture (NEW)

    For fostering innovation. This award recognises a workplace with 21-999 employees that has outpaced their cohort in fostering a culture of innovation.


  • Small team culture (NEW)

    For fostering innovation. This award recognises a workplace with less than 20 employees that has outpaced their cohort in fostering a culture of innovation


  • Work sweet work

    For a great workplace culture. This award recognises a company that has managed to improve or attain outstanding levels of employee engagement, retention and satisfaction.


  • Company of the Year (NEW)

    For the best company. This award recognises a company leadership, success, ambition to excel against all odds with the solid future development plans.


  • Defiant ones

    For new tech breakthroughs. This award recognises a company that defines the future of the industry they play in.


  • Hall of fame

    For a lifetime achievement. This award recognises a game-changer who paved the way by breaking new grounds and inventing new categories.


  • Hammer

    For nailing it. This award recognises a company's success – on their own terms – in the market.


  • I wish I'd done that

    For sheer brilliance. This award recognises a company's simple and clever idea in a niche market.


  • Indi

    For new and First Peoples. This award recognises a successful company with its founders from indigenous or ethnic heritage that gained success in the market.


  • On the rise

    For early stage mavericks. This award recognises an early stage startup that has done well in its first three years.


  • Prodigy

    For being exceptional. This award recognises a young person with exceptional qualities or abilities.


  • Women in business (NEW)

    For breaking the mould. This award recognises a successful female leader and entrepreneur who is paving the way forward for the future generations.


  • B-Good

    For a good business. This award recognises a company that has done well to change our economic system to positively impact all stakeholders through their commercial practice.


  • Circular Pioneer

    For making a difference. This award category recognises a company that is pioneering their circular efforts.


  • Going green

    For delivering impact at scale. This award recognises a company that is actively leading and delivering impact and scale through sustainable efforts in clean energy, climate change, healthy environment, social and economic justice etc.


  • You've got ethics

    For the leadership in environmental social governance. This award category recognises a company that is promoting accountability, good governance, leadership in Corporate Social Responsibility and solving societal problems.


  • Design first (NEW)

    For design lead products. This award recognises a company that is using design to drive product innovation with the entire company onboard.


  • Inception

    For visionary thinkers. This award recognises a person that came up with the transformative idea that can change the world for better.


  • Out of the garage

    For scaling globally. This award recognises a company's global growth, expansion, and success.


  • Unexpected twist

    For a great pivot. This award recognises a company that has taken an unexpected pivot in their business or career.


  • Wildfire (NEW)

    For conquering a marketplace. This award recognises a company that has made a significant impact on the marketplace in the shortest amount of time.


  • Backbone (NEW)

    For backing the future idea. This award recognises a VC firm with a portfolio of companies that have made a significant contribution to the growth and success of the AU economy.


  • Brave Angel (NEW)

    For early stage support. This award recognises an angel investor that has garnered a portfolio of companies and has a good track record of helping founders succeed.


  • C-Suite (NEW)

    For the best leadership. This award recognises the highest-ranking executive that has impeccable leadership, management and interpersonal skills.


  • Do you know who I am

    For the silent achiever. This award recognises a person that has been responsible for the success of their company from the backstage.


  • Future builder (NEW)

    For grit to start a new venture. This award recognises a founder at any level and life stage who has decided to start jumping the hoops of their own business.


  • Hottest hub (NEW)

    For the best community. This award recognises a co-working space that provides boutique experience, world class facilities with community management.


  • Launch pad (NEW)

    For activating the support systems. This award recognises an accelerator that has a good reputation in providing the best startup program with industry connections.


  • Super connector

    For being the community champ. This award recognises a person for a significant contribution to the success of their clients or the community.

Early entries close in
00d : 00h : 00m : 00s
How to enter