Inspiration from UNH
In working to become a B Corp, it’s far from a siloed process. Instead, you connect with others, build up your resource network, and learn how to do this in the most effective (and informed) way possible.
Early on, we reached out to Cornerstone Financial Planning, LLC, a certified B Corp, to ask how their assessment process went. They recommended getting involved with the B Impact Clinic, a partnership that launched in the spring of 2019 between the University of New Hampshire and New Hampshire Businesses for Social Responsibility (NHBSR).
Bringing together teams of undergraduate students from many majors and disciplines, the B Impact Clinic offers these skilled consultants to help regional companies complete their B Impact Assessment – the process to verify that companies meet these rigorous standards with a score of 80 or above to move forward.
While we were too far in the process to need a student consultant, we had the opportunity to hear from Dr. Fiona Wilson, Director of UNH’s Sustainability Institute, at the most recent Maine B Corps meeting. In learning about how Maine companies can seek assistance with the B Corp process (including certification, recertification, and social impact benchmarking purposes), we were soon put in touch with Todd Bachelder, Senior Vice President and Maine Market Manager of Mascoma Bank. Todd has been leading the initiative to create a Maine B Corp group.
We have joined alongside Todd, Wendy Blackwell-Moore from Pine Pitch Consulting, Kevin Kayne from Blaze Partners, and others to volunteer resources to help bring the Maine Certified B Corp group to our local community. Between the whole group we have the consulting, marketing, web design and development expertise to move this project forward.
Turning up the volume on Maine’s B Corp work
Maine already has done so much work in the B Corp space, and many companies have been such inspiring examples to those of us on this journey – and to those considering taking the first steps.
As a volunteer in this group, we’re proud to support the cause, donate our services, and help spread the word about what Maine B Corps are doing in a more public way. This group will also aim to be an educational resource for prospective Maine customers, employees, and business partners within the B Corp movement – as well as a networking opportunity to collaborate with local people on the same mission.
We attended a virtual meeting in February with 25-30 people on that call – such an exciting testament to our shared Maine entrepreneurial excitement about the meaningful B Corp impact! Up next, iBec will help create the website (projected to launch in April) to share information about how people can get involved with the group, participate in events, or just learn more about B Corps in Maine. Until then, the team is ironing out what this organization will look like and how it can be the best possible resource for our community.
More minds = more impactful solutions
We’re excited to volunteer to this group that will serve as an important resource for Maine businesses on this same path. In working to become a B Corp, a question all businesses will continue to ask themselves is: How can we be even better than we are now?
For iBec, one continued goal is to further strengthen our diversified purchasing policy. Right now, we largely support local vendors – but we can do even more. What other local establishments can we do business with? Are there other vendors from our underrepresented populations that we can better support?
This networking group is one clear example of the move toward mindfulness in the workplace. It’s a spot where Maine entrepreneurs can ask these kinds of questions and tap into a collaborative think tank to discover new solutions that strengthen our local economy – and positively impact our world.
As we always say here at iBec Creative, teamwork makes the dream work. We’re happy to lend some support to this talented group that will showcase the amazing B Corp work Maine businesses have already done – and will also help support what they’ll do next.
Keep following our B Corp journey!
We’re so enthusiastic to take on this huge project, and we’d love to have you alongside us! We’re going to post monthly blogs on this adventure – so follow us on Instagram and sign up for our newsletter. We can’t wait to share this journey with all of you!