Last week, I spent three days on behalf of Mentorloop in the heart of Australia – Alice Springs – assessing the heart of global business at the B Corp Australia & NZ Champions Retreat.
What are B Corps?
According to B Lab Australia: “B Corp is to business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk. B Corps are for-profit companies certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.”
And in my words: B Corp is an idea that speaks to the true power and potential of business. Business is one of the most powerful levers human beings have to change the world: creating innovation, skills, profits, influence and opportunity that can be transformed into widespread action and tangible results. Getting the B Corp certification is a simple and effective way of stating and adhering to the fact that you are using your business as a tool for positive change.
What was the retreat for?
The retreat was a chance for the B Corps of Australia and New Zealand (as well as representatives from other regions) to come together and discuss ‘What can we do together that we can’t do alone?’. It was a chance to come together, discuss our commonalities and shared belief in the power of business for good, and create some tactics and action steps in continuing to grow the B Corp movement and change the world for the better.
What did I learn?
That there are a lot of smart people in the world trying to do good through and with their businesses. Amazing stories of people helping the elderly and disabled through innovative and smart ideas; founders providing valuable employment and experience to completely capable workers in lower-income countries; investment funds backing social enterprises who otherwise might have been overlooked; and banks, construction firms, breweries, and a number of other organisations who share a genuine passion for turning their product or service into a force for good.
I also learned that one of the core objectives of many of these companies – one instilled in the B Corp mentality – is to keep their employees engaged and learning. So it was a great opportunity for Mentorloop to speak to how modern mentoring can aid in developing a culture of shared values and increasing knowledge share in a way that makes each company and the entire B Corp community more able to affect businesses in a positive manner.
How was Alice Springs?
Alice Springs was amazing! What an incredible and beautiful place to understand and acknowledge the beauty of planet Earth and reconcile how important it is to take care of it. We heard the story of Alice Springs from the aboriginal people; we listened to song from a beautiful aboriginal choir; and we gazed at stars under the southern hemisphere as we were walked through a tutorial of our incredible skies: all moving moments that I am grateful to have witnessed.
– Earth Sanctuary (star gazing) highly recommended!
– Double Tree Hilton – Alice Springs recommended!
Why you should become a B Corp
Because it’s a movement that your business should want to be a part of. B Lab and each B Corp is looking at the big picture – at stakeholder value – and making sure that their businesses and values reflect a changing business and global environment. B Corp is also an incredible community to be a part of; a community of smart and great people who have the right intentions – and the ability to act on these intentions in a powerful way.
Thank you to the B Lab Australia & NZ team for organising an unforgettable few days in Alice; and thanks to everyone who I met and had great and impactful conversations with.
I look forward to the next one.