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Meet the judges of #IA2020! Today, we talk to Holly Glowaty. Holly is Co-Founder of the US-based, branded currency consulting firm, K+H Connection, and is founding Co-Producer of Flourish Conference and Media.

Could you tell us a bit about your background?

I am co-founder of the US-based gift card, loyalty and promotional value consulting Firm K+H Connection. I am also the Producer of Flourish Conference and Media, and Co-Founder of FinFoundHer, which is an organization aimed at helping Female Founders access information and capital for their businesses. Prior to being in this wonderful industry I worked in sports marketing, events, education, politics and I was an actress and sketch comedian on the side for most of those jobs as well (I can’t tell a joke though, sorry).

In your personal or business life what are you most passionate about?

I am passionate about education and creating access to information. Any boards I am a part of or non-profits I work with are all centered around access and education. I think it is also why I produce events, have a podcast and write articles etc. Access to information opens doors to creative thinking and innovation. We have to hear from people who think differently than we do and approach challenges with multiple perspectives. It is how great products are made, and how great ideas come to life!

How many times have you been a judge and what do you like most about it?

This is my first Incentive Awards as a judge. But in other Judge-ships I have always been excited by the unexpected. I am amazed by how someone can see the same thing I am seeing, and have a totally different approach. Getting to shine a light on someone else’s ideas can also spur other thoughts from people in the room.

Have you won awards in your professional career to date?

I was named one of the Most Influential People in Incentives by Incentive Magazine in 2017 and along with my Co-Founders of FinFoundHer, was named an Empowerment Partner by Chicago Innovation for the work we do for female entrepreneurs.

What do you look for in a campaign or initiative that makes it stand out?

I am always interested in how they approach their campaign or initiative from all sides. I think frictionless customer experience and interaction is so key for success; so showing that a company understands the UX from all sides of the equation is important.

What tips would you have when it comes to entering?

Talk about the specifics, not just high level number. I am interested to see how and why people responded positively to something, not just that they did.

What would you say to someone unsure of entering?

Enter! I think people forget that they have to be able to state what is great about the work they are doing. We either get humble or just tired of explaining. So entering to win an award often helps us craft our message, and reiterate the worth of the things we are working on. Not to mention… The Incentive Awards is a great time, and a great community to be a part of. That alone makes it worth it!

What are the benefits of winning an award in general?

Well, my communications and PR teams would say the publicity for sure! I mean it is a proud moment when you win, you should share it out! It makes your industry sit up and take notice, and those around you. Also, it shows the team that works hard on these campaigns and initiatives that they are doing a great job. It gives validation both from company leadership and externally from the industry.

If you were given an award by your family or friends – what do you think it would be? 

“I was stuck in a dark maze but heard Holly’s laugh and was able to follow it out to safety award!” I say this, because I was once told that very thing, and then could not stop laughing… so it just feels very true.

Tipple of choice for the Incentive Awards after party?

Probably a vodka soda for the after-party.

Who would be your 2 ideal fantasy guests to sit beside to at the party and why?

  1. Jon Stewart. He is a HILARIOUS comedian and so smart. I would probably just go mute sitting next to him because I would be so excited to just hear him say funny things and then tear into politics.

  2. A chatty 5-year-old. At that age, kids have great imaginations and I really enjoy asking them about their thoughts. Why a 5-year-old above other ages? First, they have full sentences. Second, they are passionate about the things they like. Third, they can generally feed themselves, so you know, I am off the hook on that. Finally, I think a 5-year-old would be wildly confused by what we are talking about and wouldn’t that just be funny?

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