Certified B Corporation in Costa Rica
By the end of 2020, at greenenergy® we started the process to certify ourselves as a B Corporation. The goal was no to simply join a global directory of certified companies, but to reassure our commitment with society and the environment for the simple fact of existing. We knew the process was going to involve investing a lot of time in changes and improvements in our organization. The certification was simply our north, but the path was what added more value to our company. By September 1st, 2021, we became a Certified B Corporation in Costa Rica and the world. In this blog we will tell you our story and how this experience was for us.
What does it mean to be a Certified B Corporation?
In 2006 the B Lab non-profit organization was founded in Pennsylvania, USA. Its vision is to transform the global economy to benefit all people, communities and the Planet. Certified B Corporations join to be part of the creation of a regenerative, inclusive and equitable economic global system. Actually, the B stands for Benefit for all.
B Corps exist to become the best company for the world, not only of the world. And, in that way, it had total sense for greenenergy® to join the movement. Our philosophy has always been to improve the world we live in, that human beings become more free and self sufficient, but most of all, to leave a positive legacy in our Planet Earth.
To be a Certified B Corporation means having submitted and complied with the highest verified standards of social and environmental performance, public transparency and legal responsibility. The goal is to have a balance in the company’s economic, environmental and social results. It means to be part of a movement of companies that believe in a better way of doing business. Companies that exist to do good. Today there are more than 4.000 Certified B Corporations in 150 industries and more than 70 countries.
How was the process for greenenergy®?
The B Impact Assessment that has to be completed as part of the process is an internal comprehensive review of all impact areas. This includes our relation with communities, the environment, coworkers, clients, besides a governance analysis and other impact areas. .
While completing the assessment, we identified improvement opportunities. Some that were easy to take action upon, and others not so simple. However, without a doubt, these enriched us as a company. For example, we realized that we didn’t have a formal Environmental Policy, Health and Safety Policy, or even clearer recycling signs. We needed a much more robust Ethics Code and a more informative Employee Manual. Besides this, legally, the assessment meant to make an important change in the company’s bylaw, that included a formal and legal declaration of our purpose of not only operating to generate profits, but to commit with the environment and communities.
Eventhough many of these things were already in greenenergy®’s DNA, going from “said to done” formalized and made them official.
During this self-evaluation process, we had a lot of information exchange between departments. Spaces to comment and give feedback came to light, but overall, spaces to learn about new topics and improve our work environment. The assessment opened our eyes of things we could be doing better, and confirmed us what we were already doing well.
Even new goals came out, not necessarily related to the evaluation or certification, but just ideas that arose along the way. For example, we’ve had spaces to learn about leadership, personal finance, work-life balance, and other topics for the personal development of our team. We have given much more importance to the goal that our coworkers are happy and fuller people.
So, by being a Certified B Corporation you do everything right?
Absolutely not, and that is the best part of it. We have goals and commitments to continue complying with. Areas we need to continue developing and improvement opportunities we must to take action on. The evaluation simply enlighted us those parts in our organization that didn’t have light. So we embraced them and took action. Of that, we are truly grateful.
Now, we our part of a community of corporations, that are trying to do things in a better way. Operating in non-traditional ways, to leave a true legacy and a positive footprint on those who join us in our way.
Written by: Sofía Monge, Director of Communications, greenenergy®