B Corporations Build Brands by Doing Good

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RobertPattinson
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Proponent
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It will be a big challenge to ensure that corporations and the consumers recognize it as a credible and widely-accepted source. Many corporations are already making a lot of noise over corporate social responsibility and they might accept B Lab as an added burden over them.

Thanks

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KarlHakkarainen
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If an airline does all those things, it's good. If they can do so while reducing high-atmosphere pollution and allowing their pilots and crew to have more rest between flights than the minimum requirements, it would be better. In other words, offering a good product at a good price is necessary, but not sufficient. A B corporation has to make a positive environmental and social impact as part of the cost of doing business.

Mitch Wagner
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Benefit to the community
Mitch Wagner   4/30/2012 6:10:08 PM
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This discusson assumes that companies aren't providing benefit to the community simply by performing their business function. 

An airline connects people and businesses in faraway places, bringing them closer together. Isn't that enough good?

cvargas
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@impactnow

I know that I would like to see the government do both in a way.  For those companies that are achieving a "B corporation" designation would not only have to provide a certain benefit to the public or community (in the terms of percentage of what is donated/contributed directly) but would also get recognized for doing so with tax breaks, special designation assignment (like a BBB), and so on.  This would allow anyone doing business with the company to know that they are about helping as much as they are about making a profit.

Makes you think about just how many Fortune 1000 companies would actually receive that designation if they had to give up a % of their profits directly.  I don't think that there would be too many of them because the shareholders would have a fit and not allow it.

impactnow
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Evangelist

Intersting-- would this group be afforded any benefits or would it be a good houskeeping sort of seal?

cvargas
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Will Uncle Sam Acknowledge B Corps?
cvargas   4/23/2012 12:39:41 AM
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It would be interesting to see (or find out) if the Federal Government would create a new category of business declaration called a B Corp.  This would yield an impressive result in my mind to see how many S & C Corps would convert to become a "B Corp" if it allowed them better management of the company while having to put forth effort toward environmental or non-profit causes as a requirement of becoming such a corporation.

impactnow
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Evangelist
Socially aware companies
impactnow   4/19/2012 11:33:49 AM
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Karl it's a great example of how Kotler's prediction has become reality, I think it will expand in the future however I think that people still have challenges fully embodying the idea, as we see with some of the highly successful companies such as Apple who have questionable practices.

Mitch Wagner
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Re: Good
Mitch Wagner   4/17/2012 10:58:57 AM
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Does it make sense to try to combine social good and business? Or does it make more sense to have separate organizations that specialize?

Let car companies save cars, and let another organization save the rain forests that's specialized for rain-forest-saving.

KarlHakkarainen
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Re: Good
KarlHakkarainen   4/16/2012 7:22:18 PM
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Thanks, all, for your comments.

There are a lot of programs in traditional corporate structures that promote civic responsibility. Foundations and other charitable arms have done great good for a great many. So, it seems that B corporations might appear to be redudant. The difference that matters a lot, even though we wish that it wasn't necessary, is that officers and directors are indemnified for their work on environmental and social causes.

In C corporations, shareholders can force a company to change direction and maximize profit, either by new initiatives or by sale of the company. In the case of B corporations, the officers and directors are obligated to make money and do good; the corporate charter and the corporate law are on the side of social programs. 

i would like to believe that most business people would like to do these right things and experience has shown that many do. This corporate structure makes it easier to do the right things.

kicheko
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Re: Good
kicheko   4/16/2012 4:51:13 PM
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Reminds me of some topic i learnt some time back in business ethics and governance. That the main purpose of a business firm is not profit maximization but rather providing common good to the society. Profit is only but part of the effort to provide common good.

I'm not sure how many business owners in real life would want to hear that, but in the end it is fulfilling to know that you are making a tangible contribution in improving society.

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