The Dilemma with Crystal Awards

March 30, 2018

If you’re in the business of looking for gifts and awards or are frequently at award banquets you must be familiar with the trend of glass and crystal awards. A full table of identical etched or engraved monolithic shapes awards being presented is a common sight these days. While crystal and glass are an affordable award option they aren’t without issues.


Take 10 steps away from most of these awards and you have the same issue. Outside of the general silhouette of the award the message gets lost. It is impossible to tell who won it, what the award is for, and who awarded it. This issue isn’t just in person either; cameras have a hard time picking up etching in crystal awards making media opportunities less useful.


Most people and companies who win awards don’t just win one. Walk into a reputable award winning company and they sometimes have shelves and shelves of these amorphous shapes filling the lobby. If you are awarding the company another piece of glass or crystal you might as well be throwing another one on the heap. Awards that don’t stand out often get easily forgotten and your memories of the event go with it.


When giving out an award your goal shouldn’t just be how this will be received once. When crystal accolades are given year after year the awards end up indistinguishable, even with varied shapes and sizes. Additionally crystal doesn’t lend itself well to perpetual formats where names are added to the trophy over time allowing a chance to show repeated success. It is only a matter of time until the award loses its special quality and your back in the market for awards.

When faced with these issues the team at John Deere aimed to do things differently. The top members of their sales teams are awarded with the Platinum Plow. The award is designed around the original John Deere steel plow unmistakably tying the history of the company to the success of today. The perpetual awards allow members to attach their names to the history of the company while champion’s awards allow them to take a piece back to their home or desk.

Does this award meet our requirements? Legibility: the winner’s branch and award name are clearly visible on the engraving plate. Uniqueness: This award is truly one of a kind based on the storied legacy of John Deere, you won’t find another. Longevity: : By creating a perpetual trophy to acknowledge current and past winners it creates a desire to get your name or branch etched in company history year after year. John Deere gets an A+.

At Malcolm DeMille we always aim to set our clients up with great awards for today and into the future. If you’re looking to switch out from crystal or start a new tradition send us an email at or give us a call at (800)350-5050.

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