When Jake and Rachel Pitman heard their name called out, they were “shocked” – as well as enormously pleased and excited.
Sharing a special meal with Dane, one of their Building Assessors, Jake and Rachel were watching the virtual awards night of the 2020 Geelong Business Excellence Awards when their business, Manse Group, was announced as the winner of the City of Greater Geelong Home-based and Micro Business category.
“We really were in shock,” Rachel says. “It was the first time we’d entered the awards and to get a win was great. It was like getting extra confirmation that we were doing a good job, that our team was being recognised for all their efforts.”
Since that night, Manse Group – launched five years ago – has doubled the size of its team to six, with the construction business booming in the area. Manse Group is a building and consulting firm, specialising in contract reviews and stage-by-stage inspections.
“Construction is going gangbusters in the region, helped along by the government’s Home Builder grants. After all the challenges of COVID lockdowns, we’ve not only survived but thrived,” Rachel says.
She describes the awards application process as challenging but thoroughly worthwhile.
“It gave us and our team a chance to reflect on how far we’d come, and that was great for all of us. To take time out to evaluate is valuable in itself, and allowed us to more clearly to look to the future. I would highly recommend other local businesses enter the awards for this reason alone.
Jake and Rachel agree that Geelong Chamber of Commerce did an amazing job on the awards night.
“It would have taken a great deal of planning to pull it off and it was a huge success.
“We loved seeing all the businesses in our area taking part and were very impressed with the business diversity and what is being achieved.
“We received lots of congratulatory messages on the night and in the following weeks, from friends and clients and even a friend overseas who watched the awards on Facebook. Even now, we still get congratulated when we run across friends or old clients.”
On another confirmatory note, Manse Group obviously impressed the judges because one of them went on to use the building service himself.