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March 16, 2012

Come meet people doing well by doing good: bcorp + prospective bcorp mixer

2 minute read, in Business

I’m getting more and more questions about BCorp.
Instead of answering the basics through email, I thought I’d post a bit about why we’re certified and invite you to an event that’s happening this week where you can learn more about it.

Maybe the best way to start is to answer why Hypenotic became a BCorp.

Yes, I realize we don’t have legislation to support our commitment to running a purpose driven business in Ontario. Yet. My hope is that when enough corporations make the symbolic commitment, it will put pressure on lawmakers to create provisions for us. That’s why we’re putting in extra effort to help BCorp grow.

Until then, the certification offers several direct benefits:

  1. We were doing business ethically already, so it’s nice to be recognized for it. We love gold stars.
  2. As it turns out, we’re not perfect, and our scorecard gives us insight into where we can improve.
  3. There are now over 500 BCorps in Canada and the US, 7 states that recognize it and 5 more in the pipeline. We’d prefer to both get business from and give business to these kinds of enterprises.

Certification also has several indirect benefits:

  1. We’ve already received work from the kind of clients we like in part due to our certification.
  2. This morning I presented to a dream arts/community based client after making it to the second round of proposals. They cited two reasons for inviting us: A previous project they like, and upon digging into us, our Bcorp certification.

I see many indications that unsustainable business practices are being recognized for what they are, including a financial crisis dominoing across Europe and the US’ housing collapse in 2007/8. I truly believe that businesses will increasingly require proof at minimum of ethical practices, but more likely evidence that how they make their margins actually brings value to others as well.

We were already observing many of the certification tenets, but this year we’re putting one person in charge of shepherding us to better grades. We can only improve in some areas, but we like the idea of a roadmap, so we’re glad to have them.

If you’re incorporated (big or small), and would like to meet corporate leaders of purpose driven businesses, then we’ve got a party for you. It’s Happening Wednesday at fellow Bcorp Patagonia’s swell space down the street on King West and is co-hosted by Bcorp and The Natural Step Canada. We’re each supposed to bring a prospective Bcorp. Will you come?

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