We have always endeavoured to do the right thing as a business. Leaving an elite organisation like the Royal Marines you retain the values and principles that shaped you as a young officer. You carry with you an exacting set of standards too on how to treat your fellow human beings, always with respect and understanding. The Commando values shaped us 30 years ago and they continue to guide and inspire us as a business today.
Countless charity events, millions raised for deserving causes, multiple apprentices trained, kickstarters launched and many members of staff rising above us to pursue bigger challenges are all characteristics of this ethos.
It was riding in the French Alps raising money for Duchenne UK, 4 years ago that sparked my interest in B Corporation. A fellow rider with 1500 km of road ridden between us, shared his aspirations for membership. It was fitting that we were riding on inspirational roads to one of the highest and most beautiful summits in the Alps.
It became an obsession, intrigued and inspired I set out on the journey to membership. A stuttering start pre-pandemic, transformed into an intense 12 month project of early morning reflections and the gathering of evidence during the Pandemic. A change to our Articles of Association and the sharing of data and experience for each of the domains dictated my routine for many months. We did not engage an external consultant to support our journey to membership.
The process allows you to work through each domain at your own pace. Presenting evidence and answering a number incisive questions encouraged me to reflect deeply on all aspects of how Mission Performance impacts the world.
Once the evidence was submitted it is then reviewed with multiple clarifications from your B Corp guide to ensure your answers reflected an accurate and true representation of the business. Additional audits were carried out culminating in a series of interviews and a final award of points for each domain and answers submitted.
I waited a few months for our report and the decision. For us it was a starting point and our objective was to learn how we could improve regardless of whether we achieved the standard for entry.
In early Spring 2021 we were told that we had met the standard (just) and were now a B Corp. Armed with an improvement report for every question and domain, we are busy identifying how we can improve as a business.
This is one of the best aspects of membership. You are in effect given an improvement road map.
We have already begun to address the many gaps in our report. We are due for reassessment in 2024 and in the meantime will be reaching out to the B Corporation community for inspiration, ideas and future partnerships.
If you want to know more then check out these links or contact us.
How to Certify as a B Corp
About B Lab UK
Act and Learn