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ICX Association Excellence Awards

The 2015 ICX Summit wrapped-up, yesterday, and now that I’ve had a good night’s sleep in my own bed, I can finally start to wrap my head around what a success our inaugural event was and how much fun I had.

The highlight of the Summit, for me, was handing out the 2015 ICX Association Excellence Awards at Skydeck Chicago on Monday night.

Pride and humility and gratitude

After a fun, but long day of great sessions at the Sofitel Hotel, I grabbed a cab with Jessica Arstingstall, from our events team, to race over to the Willis Tower to get everything set up just ahead of about 300 attendees, who were finishing the final sessions of the day.

ICX Summit: Reflections on what stuckAs our winners trickled in, I had the great pleasure of hearing stories of what it took to make their particular deployments happen. In our daily grind of getting-it-done, it’s easy to fall prey to cynicism and negativity, but last Monday, there was none of that. What I saw instead was pride and humility and gratitude for having been recognized for being extraordinary.

Vendors turn their clients’ visions into tangible products and services, and knowing how hard it can be to earn trust at the beginning of a client-relationship, it was great to see the representatives from the winning brands laughing and hugging their vendors – by now, certainly, trusted partners with a track record of success and a beautiful trophy to symbolize it.

In case you weren’t there, here is the list of winners. If you recognize any of them, stop in and take a look at what they’re doing. It’s remarkable work.

The 2015 ICX Association Excellence Awards Winners:

  • Best Corporate Communications Deployment: Digital Signage

Acorda and Téléciné, “SynapseTV”

  • Best Digital Out-of-Home Deployment: Kiosk/Self-Service

Verifone Media: VNET In Store

  • Best Digital Out-Of-Home Deployment: Mobile

Verifone Media: VNET In Store

  • Best Entertainment/Gaming Deployment: Digital Signage

AMC – Allure Global Optimized Digital Menu Board Deployment

  • Best Entertainment/Gaming Deployment: Kiosk/Self-Service

LA Interactive for LA STAPLES Center

  • Best Government, Education or Non-Profit Deployment

Rotman School of Management – University of Toronto

  • Best Healthcare Deployment: Digital Signage

The Marianjoy Rehabilitation Hospital Digital Network

  • Best Healthcare Deployment: Kiosk/Self-Service

ContextMedia Exam Room Tablet

  • Best Restaurant/Foodservice Deployment: Kiosk/Self-Service

Buzztime BEOND Tablet

  • Best Retail Deployment: Digital Signage

Toronto Blue Jays Flagship Retail Shop

  • Best Retail Deployment: Kiosk/Self-Service

Shell Fuel Rewards Kiosk

  • Best Retail Deployment: Mobile


  • Best Travel/Hospitality Deployment

San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

  • Best At-Large Deployment

Leap Motion Enabled Multi-Touch Presentation Tool, RMG Networks


Without whose generosity…

Just as each of the winners above can list a long line of contributors to their success, so too can the ICX Association.

Earlier this year, we put out a call for judges, and 79 people filled out the application to help us evaluate our submissions. From that list, 24 were chosen, representing the brand side of the equation, the supplier side, agencies, universities and governmental agencies. It was a well-rounded group of experts.

A heartfelt “Thank you!” goes out to the judges of the 2015 ICX Association Excellence Awards, without whose generosity these honors would be impossible to bestow:

  • Janet Webster – Creative Solutions Consulting, LLC
  • Ken Bronson – Avatar Studios
  • Jill Perardi – Visix, Inc.
  • Bill Lynch – Reevex
  • Mark Yeaman – Digital Solutions, LLC
  • Bryson Hyte – Reality Interactive
  • Seamus McGrath – ANZ Bank
  • Jennifer Nye – Ann Sacks/Kohler
  • Tom Zaken – Image Manufacturing Group
  • Shonan Noronha – Sound & Communications
  • Mike James – Kiosk Group, Inc.
  • Holly Rollins – 10-x Group
  • Sarah Furnari – Behr
  • Matthew Ellett – Sprint
  • Ateker Owane – Alberta Gaming & Liquor Commission
  • Kapil Bajaj – Ohio University
  • Lou Thurmon – Two West Inc.
  • Steve Crosby – Hess Corporation
  • Kevin Park – The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Jeff Ulrich – United Airlines
  • Charles Marrelli – Havas Worldwide
  • Alex Baker – Domedia
  • Christopher Blasie – Rockwell Collins
  • Kathryn Koning – Global Software Applications, LLC

A speech, not a sales pitch

ICX Association Excellence AwardsI’ll close with this story. As you plan an event, you think of what should go right, but you obsess over what could go very, very wrong. The list can run from the reasonable (catering problems, no-shows, boring speakers) to the ridiculous (cataclysmic natural disasters, and alien invasions). For our event, there was worry over whether the awards would show up on time with all the names spelled correctly, as proofed (for the record, they showed up early, with no hiccups).

There was also a small amount of worry about the acceptance speeches themselves. The temptations are great, in a room filled with potential clients, to launch into a features and benefits laden acceptance speech. When asked by others if I was worried about this (and how boring it would become if EVERY recipient did it!) and whether it might be better to just hand off the award with a handshake, I stuck to the original idea, trusting that our winners understood that this was a speech, not a sales pitch.

After the ceremony itself, I heard so many folks comment on the speeches and how funny or touching or impressive this one or that one was. And I have to say, it was those speeches that cause me to say that of all that I experienced at this year’s ICX Summit, it’s the speeches – filled with pride and humility and gratitude, along with a little humor – that I keep going back to.

Thanks to all who participated in this year’s ICX Association Excellence Awards. Next year, look for new categories and new opportunities for recognizing an ever-expanding spectrum of technological applications to the customer experience.

I can’t wait!

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