Barclays Corporate Banking is sponsoring the Business of the Year and Outstanding Achievement categories at the Eastern Daily Press Business Awards 2023.

Tim Seeley, head of East Anglia mid-corporate banking, explains why the firm values the awards and what he’ll be looking for as a judge.

How would you summarise your career at Barclays?

I have really enjoyed my banking career. Barclays have been very fair to me, I think I’ve given a lot to it, and it’s been very rewarding.

I’ve made lots of friends, and I’ve worked with businesses that have been absolutely fascinating to me – whether that be when I was head of agriculture or now head of corporate banking for East Anglia.

I’ve had a wide range of roles and experiences, and I just hope that, in my way, I’ve been able to give a bit back to business.

What value do you get from sponsoring the EDP Business Awards?

We don’t sponsor these awards just to have our name on the programme. It’s seen across the whole business as being very important because of our roots and history in Norfolk.

The fact that we helped the EDP develop the concept of these awards means that it feels a bit like our baby as well.

Eastern Daily Press: Tim Seeley, head of East Anglia mid-corporate banking for BarclaysTim Seeley, head of East Anglia mid-corporate banking for Barclays (Image: Barclays)

What do you enjoy about the judging process?

I think it’s really interesting with the judging panel to hear how ‘non-bankers’ approach the analysis of a business and what they see as important. Each year I learn from both the process and those that we visit.

It’s a privilege for the judges to walk into a business and for them to be an open book to us. Business can be a lonely place, and therefore it’s sometimes quite nice to be able to talk to other people about what you’ve achieved and how you’ve gone about it.

What do you consider when it comes to selecting a Business of the Year?

It’s actually a judgement of the business ‘in the round’. It’s all the aspects of a business – whether it be good governance, people management, HR policies, social responsibilities.

It’s an endless list, and Business of the Year tends to be one that does well in each of those areas, as opposed to doing incredibly well in one or two.

How do you compare the outstanding achievement of an individual to that of a business?

It’s quite difficult, and ultimately it’s quite subjective. It comes down to whether the judges view an individual’s level of contribution as being greater than the comparative business. It’s not an easy thing to actually put a quantitative measure against.

You can measure it in terms of what a business or individual has done for the community or for the economy, but ultimately the Outstanding Achievement award is about impact.

What do you see as the biggest opportunities for businesses in Norfolk?

I think there is a big opportunity in our area around the energy hubs and freeports.

If you look at what’s happened in Teesside and the more established freeports, they have brought significant economic and employment growth to those areas.

We also need to embrace the opportunities of the green energy sector, alongside that underbelly of hidden growth in the digital sector.

The winners of the EDP Business Awards 2023 will be announced at a ceremony at the Norfolk Showground, Norwich on Thursday, November 23. Visit for more information.