I am proud to say that my business, Skiba Consulting, was recently certified as a B Corporation. B Corps are legally required to consider the impact of their decisions not only on their shareholders, but also on others who might be affected by their actions. B Corps inspire all businesses to compete not only to be the best in the world, but to be the best for the world. There are currently over 900 businesses around the world that are certified B Corporations.
Each business that is certified does so for its own reasons. We became a B Corp for three reasons: Community, Visibility, and Accountability.
- Community: It can be hard to feel like an outlier, like maybe you’re the one who just doesn’t get what business is about. It’s been nice to read about triple bottom line companies in the abstract, but it’s even more energizing to be a part of the B Corps community. I look forward to meeting more of my business soul mates at local and national get-togethers.
- Visibility: I am an independent business coach and consultant, so it’s important that prospective clients be able to find me and feel like I share their values. The B Corps certification provides validation that a third party has checked us out and certified that we conform to a certain set of business standards. I expect that many of the businesses that see the B Corps logo on my website or my business card will not previously have heard of the certification. Once they’ve checked it out, they’ll feel more comfortable with what we stand for.
- Accountability: It’s easy for a business owner to simply state “I do business the right way.” That’s a starting point, but it does not push the business towards triple-bottom line decisions. The B Corp certification has been developed to drive real social change in business, and forces them to take action on ways that might enhance their impact in the world. It’s not about perfection from the get go – it’s about embarking on a path of continuing improvement. In this way, it serves a purpose similar to other certifications such as ISO9000 (quality) and ISO14001 (environment.)
I look forward to being a part of the B Corps community, to keep learning about how to improve my business practices, and to sharing those insights with the businesses that I serve as a business coach and consultant.