Have you decided that certifying as a B Corp is the next step for your business growth? Congratulations! The B Corp certification is an excellent way to showcase your commitment to sustainably and plant protection. Your company needs to hit a minimum score of 80 to be become a certified B Corp. Do not fret! With a little planning and prep work, the process will flow smoothly
1. Have all your corporate documents in PDF format for easy access and submission.
During your B Quick Impact Assessment, you will be asked a series of questions about your business covering several areas. A quick tip for success is to have all of your justification documents ready to attach to the question. The B Lab will review your answers after submission and ask for documentation to support your explanation. Submitting the documentation with the initial assessment helps the B Lab representatives award points to the question. A few things to have ready: employee handbooks; company policies, charters, or other formal documentation covering benefits; trash and waste metrics (in tons); shipping information; supply chain management information; energy usage; and community metrics (race, gender, ethnicity). Having documentation ready and available will help you cruise through the B Impact Assessment with ease and reduce the amount of time you will spend supporting your decisions through B Lab.
2. Answer every question with your current business state in mind.
This tip may sound simple or obvious, but it is the cause of many hang-ups during the formal certification process. Do not provide answers about what you plan to do in the future. Only answer the questions using your current organizational state. There’s no need to be embarrassed about your score! Clients of mine actually feel bad about receiving a low score on their impact assessment….. DO NOT feel ashamed of your score. You have taken the initial step towards bettering this world. This is your chance to take a quantum leap in your organizational development. Whether your score is 0 or 79, we are here to help you reach your success goals. So, own it!
3. Take breaks!
The B Impact Assessment customizes the questions based on your responses to key areas of your business. It usually will take 1-3 hours to complete the assessment, so take a break! The Impact Assessment will save your progress automatically. It is better to thoroughly read each question and answer with intent than to provide inaccurate information. My suggestion is to put block out one week in your schedule to complete the assessment. Choose a specific area each day of the week and dedicate 30 minutes to the section. Give it a shot early in the morning when you are focused and free from distractions. Maybe during your early morning routine with coffee (my favorite time) or tea. In less than 6 days, you will have a complete and accurate assessment ready for submission. Easy day!
4. Work with members of your organization to complete the assessment
This tip works in a few different ways. First, everything is better when you have the right people, in the right place, at the right time, to answer the questions accurately. Secondly, you just created the needed buy-in and momentum required to make the change in your organization! This is the time to get people excited about the work that is to come and how fantastic the growth opportunity will be for your organization. Having a dedicated team assembled to work with a consultant or B Lab professional puts you ahead. Schedule some time with your team and work on the assessment together over a lunch or a Friday afternoon. Make it a bonding and team-building experience!
5. If you don’t know the answer, don’t sweat it!
A consultant or professionals at the B Lab will help you work through any questions you may have about the assessment. If you genuinely do not know the answer, give it your best shot, but mark it for further review. You will have the time to go back and change your answers if needed. The goal is to get all businesses certified as B Corps! This definitely isn’t a “good ole’ boys club” of business. Remember, there is always support with a quick phone call or email. Happy certifying!