Nominate Nominate

Categories and Criteria

Everything you need to know

Before you nominate yourself or someone else for the Telstra Business Women's Awards, here are some important things to remember. Explore our Award categories, check your eligibility and find out what our Judges are looking for.

The categories


In celebration of women's achievements across all industries and workplaces, the 2019 Telstra Business Women's Awards are recognising outstanding individuals in five different categories. At each State Awards evening, five high-achieving women will become the State Winners for each category, with an overall State Business Woman of the Year also revealed. Then, State Winners will advance to the National Final, where we'll announce each Australian category winner and the Telstra Australian Business Woman of the Year.

The categories are:

Small Business Award

For innovative women who are blazing a trail in their own business. This category is for individuals who own at least 25% of a business that's earning less than $5 million in revenue, and which has been operating for at least two years.

Medium & Large Business Award

For high-achieving and ambitious individuals who define the direction of their business in everything they do, no matter their job title. Corporate leaders and employees in the private and corporate sector where the business earns over $5 million annual revenue, are eligible for this category.

Public Sector & Academia Award

For women who've dedicated themselves to making an impact in education or the public service. Employees of government departments, educational institutions and statutory bodies may enter this category.

For Purpose & Social Enterprise Award

This category celebrates leaders and employees of organisations making a positive difference to the world around them, from social missions to environmental change. Women working in not-for-profit and social ventures are eligible.

Emerging Leader Award

For the up-and-coming talent of tomorrow. These women are 30 years old or under, and may only just be starting out on their career goals, but they have the capability, commitment and vision to become our future leaders.

Eligibility criteria


Do you meet the criteria?

To help us recognise only the most deserving talent from Australia, we have a few criteria for all Telstra Business Women's Awards nominees. If you have any questions about these conditions or eligibility, we’re always happy to help. Ask us a question here.

You must:

Meet the requirements for one of our Awards categories, as either:

  • An employee in the private and corporate sector
  • An employee in the public sector or academia
  • A small business owner with a 25% share or more of a business, who is fully engaged and active in the day-to-day running and decision-making in a business you’ve been operating for a minimum of two years
  • An owner or employee of an organisation that delivers positive social/environmental change as their core mission (including not for profit and social ventures)
  • A woman who is 30 years old or under, and may only just be starting out on their career goals, but they have the capability, commitment and vision to become our future leaders.

You must not:

  • Be an employee of Telstra, a sponsor, a Judge or a direct supplier of the Telstra Business Women’s Awards
  • Work on a business in which Telstra has a financial interest
  • Have been involved in the judging of the Telstra Business Women’s Awards in the past three years

Judging criteria


The women who take the spotlight in the Telstra Business Women's Awards come from all circles of business. Our judging criteria allow us to understand our entrants and finalists as people and professionals across a range of skills and specialities, as well as the businesses in which they're making a difference.

Here's what the Judges love to see in a Telstra Business Women's Award winner:

Business Overview

  • Helps the business deliver on customer value
  • Takes advantage of technology to do business differently

Vision & Strategy

  • Is forward-thinking
  • Plans for the future
  • Takes a strategic approach to business and mitigates risk

Personal Impact

  • Innovates and overcomes challenges
  • Has a personal financial impact on the business
  • Drives the business's overall success

Financial Impact

  • Applies solid financial constructs to the organisation
  • Demonstrates good financial management

Social Impact

  • Has a positive impact on society
  • Understands and supports social initiatives set by the wider organisation
  • Measures social impact and acts ethically and honestly within the organisation

Economic Impact

  • Shows active support for economic initiatives set by the business as a whole
  • Understands and measures economic impact


  • Influences, listens, mentors and negotiates with colleagues
  • Adapts communication style to different tasks and audiences
  • Demonstrates clarity and empathy

Inspiring Others

  • Leads by example
  • Drives others to perform to the best of their ability

Diversity & Inclusion

  • Maintains a thoughtful approach to diversity and inclusion
  • Encourages diversity of thought

Track Record & Adaptability

  • Is adaptable to different professional environments
  • Has learned and grown from previous challenges
  • Takes proactive steps to improve


  • Has balanced referees who can support the entrant's self-assessment

Hear advice from past winners and finalists

Still thinking about entering the Awards, or want to know more about what the experience gives you? Get some tips and inspiration direct from our Alumni.

Nominate Now

The standard set by the Judges maintains the Awards' credibility, thus value within the community. It's made me challenge what the word 'business' stands for.

Penny Terry, ABC, 2016 Telstra Tasmanian Public Sector and Academia Award

Nominate now

The 2019 Telstra Business Women's Awards are now closed. Nominate an inspirational woman in business for the 2020 Telstra Business Women's Awards.

It’s easy. Just tell us a little more about who you’re nominating.

Nominate now