David Moritz: Founder & CEO, Society Awards

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Bio:

Entrepreneur David Moritz is the founder and CEO of Society Awards. Society Awards was founded in 2007 and has continued to post remarkable growth throughout its history. Under his leadership, the company has been included on Inc. Magazine's prestigious 500|5000 list of the fastest growing companies in the country five times and has won dozens of awards for design and marketing. The company was started when Moritz identified the need for a luxury provider within the high-end and custom award market. In just a few short years he made Society Awards into the premiere company worldwide in its category. The brand remains the only luxury awards brand and offers a level of quality, service and presentation unmatched in the industry. This is accomplished through strict quality control, proprietary production processes, concierge service and many “elements of delight” such as the brand’s signature gold presentation boxes.

How did you get into the industry?

I was in law school but I wanted to do something creative and create a business for myself, so I looked for a niche industry where I could make a big impact.  I was getting a bit too creative in my law firm job.  I figured that rather than spending all my time designing custom suits and elaborate Halloween costumes, I had better do something more productive.  I had also created a bar in New York City with the name Society Bar at that time, and spent a great deal of time on the name, so it seemed perfect for this application as well.  For a short time there was a Society Awards, and a Society Bar!  Talk about a great way to entertain clients.  Now, there is a bar in our office.  

Any emerging industry trends?

We make sculptures and aside from a few process changes, there hasn’t been too much trending in the last few thousand years.  In the 1950s Lucite was invented, though we have moved away from that in most cases and prefer crystal.  3D printing always rears its ugly head, but the problem is that its head is still very ugly.  No one today wants a 3D printed award, compared to a smooth polished and cast metal sculpture.  But someday, that will likely change.  

Any industry opportunities or challenges?

We just finished a huge expansion of our production facility in Oklahoma and over the amenity pavilion we installed a glass canopy that is photovoltaic solar cells, which power the building.  This addresses the need for “green” everything, looks beautiful, and is just a modern way to do things.  

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?

Our vision was to take what was previously a manufacturing-centric industry and lead it with a customer service centric business that supplies luxury products with concierge services.

What's next for the Business in the near future?

In addition to collaborations with name brands like Nambe, we have started our financial services division, Society Awards Finance Group, which brings the same quality and prestige that we have in awards to the similar-but-different industry of deal toys.  

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business?

Great designs are essential to what we do, and it’s necessary that we’re able to tell what a great design is.  We also run a tight operation, so the fewer mistakes we make, the more affordable our products can be.  Lastly, a key initiative is our brand image – the better we look, automatically the more valuable our products are to our customers and the better we make them look.  

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?)

The first three years I worked around the clock, and I learned that if you simply do the work of four people, and you can sell, then you can usually ensure yourself a modicum of success or at least prevent failure.  

Ideal experience for a customer/client?

Every customer that comes to Society Awards has the wonderful experience of freedom from doubt and insecurity – they don’t have to worry about their project when they take it to us.  That’s what we communicate from start to finish. The ideal experience is when a client doesn’t have to worry about anything, because the process along the way was fun, in budget, on time, and concluded with a beautiful piece of art.

How do you motivate others?

I don’t think you can or should spend time on trying to motivate people.  Instead, I like to find motivated people and keep them from becoming demotivated.  I like to continually inspire.  

Career advice to those in your industry?

Everyone who works at Society Awards came from another industry, so I would say, see my answer to question number seven – work like crazy, it usually works!

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