This is a post by Meredith Broderick, our Impact and Communications Intern.
As the saying goes, the purpose of a business is to solve a problem. In the UK, climate change naysayers are few and far between at only 2% to 5% of the population according to a ComRes study. Of those who believe in climate change, the majority believe that humans are the direct cause. The good news is: most agree it’s a problem. Businesses have the opportunity to embrace this problem with creativity, reap the potential earnings, and benefit shareholders. But, many don’t know where to start. The task seems daunting. Here is where Certified B Corporations® come in.
Certified B Corps are for-profit companies that follow B Lab’s high standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability. You may have heard of a few like Kickstarter, Etsy, Patagonia, Ben & Jerry’s, and, one of the newest members, Do Nation! Yes, we were certified about two weeks ago.
While Do Nation was going through the B Lab certification process, I came to London as a US undergraduate student and began working with Do Nation. In addition to helping individuals form sustainable and healthy habits, Do Nation was seeking to make sure it was at a high level of environmental performance, transparent, and accountable. I was extremely excited to be working for a B Corp and a company with morals I could easily get behind it. No green washing involved.
From what I’ve seen and experienced, B Corps have the opportunity to unite people. One of Do Nation’s goals is to build communities of family, friends, and colleagues that support one another in sustainable lifestyles, but Do Nation now will be able to connect to a large community through B Corp’s extensive business network.
Looking more globally at the ideological issues in politics, it is no secret that both UK and US citizens are deeply divided, especially during the time that I’ve been studying in London. In the environmental realm, many seem to have the misconception that it’s either business or the environment. B Corps can offer a uniting solution. B Corps can cross social, economic, political, racial, and gender lines, because they are good for everyone.
As a rising 4th year student, I get asked often what I am planning on doing after I graduate. When I say I want to build a career around the environment and climate change negation, I almost see people who do not care as much about climate change rolling their eyes at me because they think it’s fluffy or too idealistic. But, when I explain the way I hope to do this is through impactful, creative, and profitable business, this gets people’s attention, because ultimately, it’s a win for everyone.
As a lasting thought for today, I wanted to end on a quote from the founder of Patagonia.
“Because the world is changing, we can never assume that the way we have done things in the past is adequate for the future.” – Yvon Chouinard
Learn more about B Corps here.