How to go from agency to b-corp

How to go from agency to b-corp

CEO and founder of emc3, Alistair Graham, talks about the agency's motivation for pursuing B Corp status.

Investing in the culture of emc3 has been my top priority for a considerable time. My belief is that investing in people is the key to establishing a happy, motivated company where everyone wants to work. Furthermore, for the last few years, I’ve become more and more concerned about the kind of planet that I would leave behind for my children and possibly, grandchildren. Our decision to pursue the B Corp certification is more than just an environmental accreditation or a culture award; it’s about using our business as a force for good. Our goal at emc3 is to create unforgettable experiences while also leaving a positive enduring legacy.

What was the start of the B Corp journey like?

In order to start the certification process to become a B Corp, we were tasked with answering over 125 questions, which turned out to be a time-consuming task. To ensure we were completing these to the highest standard, we hired a recent graduate to become our first dedicated Sustainability Officer to support the team throughout the process. 

We were naive to think at first that the whole process would take around 6 months: it ended up closer to three times this, to ensure we had the right processes and documentation in place.

Was there anything major you had to change in order to achieve B Corp?

To become a B Corp, we had to make a legal commitment, to all stakeholders at emc3 by changing our articles of association, to ensure that everything we do has a positive social and environmental impact. But we’ve been on the journey towards this for a long time already, meaning we were fortunate enough to have most of the policies in place already: sustainability has always been a part of everything we do, we just hadn’t got a lot of it documented. Everything just needed to be written down. For example, we encourage the team to take paid time off each year to volunteer; everyone knows this, but it’s all about having a formal policy.

What are you most proud of?

Being recognized and appreciated for something you care about is always a nice feeling. However, I am exceptionally proud of the fact that every person at emc3 is committed to our cause. It is always important to remind people that sustainability encompasses far more than just carbon emissions; it’s also about social responsibility, which is precisely what B Corp stands for.

Alongside emc3’s own commitment to using events as a force for good, we’ve also recently set up a partner consultancy, from now, dedicated to helping not just our clients, but the wider events and hospitality industries on their own sustainability journeys.