July in Australia is #BCorpMonth and it’s been wonderful to see both my LinkedIn and Facebook feeds filled with the Gormanesque B Corp Month imagery and an array of incredible stories about organisations who are in business to make a real difference.
It’s made me reflect on our journey to become a B Corp and what it means to have been welcomed into this inclusive and supportive community, how it’s lifted us as an organisation and impacted the decisions we make.
Since starting the agency in 2012 I have maintained a focus on our mission and vision to change corporate culture so that recognising the input of those who contribute to an organisation’s success is second nature and common place. That companies put people and the planet at least as equal to profit, but preferably ahead. For the majority of that six and a half year journey I’ve been seeing people glaze over as I’ve tried to explain the importance of doing business differently.
But, ever so slowly I am heartened to see that there is a shift in the world, one that I’m sure is being driven because of the energy and force of organisations like B Lab to encourage more and more companies to step up to their claims and do what is necessary to attain B Corp certification.
As a small agency I originally thought it wouldn’t be possible to achieve certification and join a community with industry-leading giants like Pategonia, Ben & Jerry’s and our new friends at 4 Pines Brewing. But, thanks to the guidance and encouragement of the team at B Lab we decided to make a commitment and do what was needed.
For us, this meant formalising our work practices with policy and commitments, looking at our buying practices and charging forward with our goal of working with organisations that have a positive social impact. Because, after all, how does one small Northern Beaches-based communications agency change corporate culture, aka the world? By being the voice for that impact to amplify it and show others why it’s important to change.
The certification process crystallised our processes and helped us to implement new ones. What I’ve come to realise is that, becoming a B Corp has not just embedded that original mission of changing corporate culture, but expanded it to ensure that our impact and our reason for being, which is to educate audiences so that more organisations take action for a better future, changes societal culture as a whole.
And, since certification I am finding that more people are randomly asking to work with us because they love what we stand for, both as a team member and as a client. This week we’ve started a new contract with a client who only wanted to work with someone who understood their sustainability goals and messaging and who was the right fit for them. I know that our certification went a long way to securing that account because it stands for so much. Oh, and during our meeting they added B Corp certification to their goals list. Viva la Revolution!