5 Must Read Articles about B Corporations (Plus One TED Talk)

Mark Horoszowski

Mark is the Co-founder of MovingWorlds.org, a global platform connecting people who want to volunteer their expertise with social impact organizations.

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Certified B Corporations are leading a global movement to redefine success in business. Here a 5 articles you should read, plus some extra resources to follow the movement.

By voluntarily meeting higher standards of transparency, accountability, and performance, Certified B Corps are distinguishing themselves in a cluttered marketplace by offering a positive vision of a better way to do business.

Article #1: “Companies with Benefits” by The New Yorker

…the rise of B corps is a reminder that the idea that corporations should be only lean, mean, profit-maximizing machines isn’t dictated by the inherent nature of capitalism, let alone by human nature. As individuals, we try to make our work not just profitable but also meaningful. It may be time for more companies to do the same…

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Article #2: “The Rise of Conscious Capitalism” by AMEX Open Forum

A new generation of entrepreneurs is practicing a business model that places just as much importance on doing social good as on making money.

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Article #3: “Benefit Corporations Look Beyond the Profit Motive” by NPR

A corporation has one core obligation: to make money. But some companies are signing a deal, promising to create not only profit but also a tangible benefit to society and the environment. They’re called benefit corporations, and their movement has caught the ear of lawmakers across the country.

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Article #4: “Firms with Benefits” by The Economist

…The impetus for all this comes from people like Mr Chouinard, who believe that existing laws governing corporations and charities are too restrictive. For-profit firms, they argue, often face pressure to abandon social goals in favor of increasing profits. Non-profit firms and charities are needlessly restricted in their ability to raise capital when they need to grow.

This prevents socially minded organisations from pursuing their goals as efficiently as possible. Existing laws for co-operatives and mutual companies are inadequate. Hence the need for B Corps and other novel structures, goes the argument…

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Article #5: “Q&A With the B Labs Founder” by Fastcompany

It starts with measuring what matters. For a lot of big, public companies, the ethos has been about corporate social responsibility – doing some good philanthropy or volunteering work. Those things are important, but they may have no effect on the real impact that the company has on society through its business practices or its products. To help companies measure what matter, we’ve opened up the same assessment tool that we use for certifying B Corps for ALL companies to use for free. It’s called the B Impact Assessment. It allows any company to measure its impact on all of its stakeholders, and it provides benchmarking and improvement tools that allow a company to take action.

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A TED Talk on B Corporations

How Can You Support the B Corporation Movement?

There are a few essential components to the B Corporation movement:

  • The industry certification given by the nonprofit, B Labs, that provides sourcing, marketing, and recruiting benefits
  • The state legal status that legally binds a company to its social mission

In order to support both, Join The B Corp Movement here, and then consider these others things you can do:

1. Follow the B Corporation movement on social media

Facebook

Twitter

Google+

LinkedIn

Blog

2. Buy from a B Corporation

Use the search on BCorporation.net to look for B Corps that provide what you’re looking for… from products to services to banking, there is a B Corp in almost every industry.

 

3. Volunteer at B Corporation

Use a service like Catchafire for domestic matches, or MovingWorlds for international connections. Both can connect you to inspiring “B Corps” around the world.

 

4. Assess your company

Whether you are an owner or employee, you can look at the free B Impact Assessment, or encourage your leaders to do it.

5. Work at a B Corp

Use the BCorporation Job Board to find a job in this rapidly growing industry. According to B Labs:

Have you been looking for a job opportunity where you are able to bring your whole self to work every day? Where you know that the company that you work for cares not only for the health of the company, but also for the health of their employees, the community and the environment? Then look no further. Below are the certified B Corps and B Corp partners who are hiring right now.

 

States with Benefit Corporations

6. Encourage your state legislators to adopt B Corps Legislation

Wikipedia has a list of all the states with B Corporations, as seen in this image.

This website has a list with more details about the legislation at the state level, including sample legislation if you want to start working on it in your own state.

 

 

 


How Your Company Can Become a B Corporation

If you are interested in incorporating as a Benefit Corporation, check out the complete guide on BCorporation.net.

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