Why aren't more consulting firms in the UK a B Corp?

05 March 2021 Consultancy.uk 2 min. read
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With the first week of B Corp month drawing to a close, UK B Corp Ambassador James Bidwell asks why the number of consultancies that have embraced the B Corp is not growing more quickly.

The consultancy business as we know it is facing an existential crisis. As a next generation consultancy, one of very few B Corp accredited consultancies in the UK, we believe that there is a real urgency for the sector to reinvent itself for the future, rather than resting on its laurels.

That we need to focus on transformational change is especially pertinent in the light of the recent negative news coverage about both McKinsey [a $573 million settlement] and KPMG [an ousted Chairman for controversial remarks] who seem stuck in the old paradigm. B Corp consultancies are uniquely dedicated to "business as a force for good” and as such the Re_Set mission is to support our clients to do just that.

Why aren't more consulting firms in the UK a B Corp?As the threat of climate disaster grows closer and the warnings grow louder, this month’s B Corp month will campaign to urge more businesses to adopt strategies that place people, planet and profit at the heart of business. 

There are really good business reasons to consider becoming a B Corp. According to B Lab UK (the team who manage certification) there is increasing evidence that B Corps can be more profitable, more resilient, more attractive to next generation talent as well as driving the much-needed transformational change required to deal with the climate crisis and increasingly important social issues. 

Brands like Patagonia have been leading the way on these issues for many years. Founder Yvon Chouinard has consistently put planet ahead of profit, as well as remaining privately owned but that is a story for another day. And guess what – record sales, record profits and brand loyalty most retailers can only dream of, while many of their peers go to the wall

In a world where it seems impossible for governments to work together, business really should step up to the plate and leverage their global footprint to push this agenda. Consultancy businesses are no different. 

For my part, B Corp accreditation means that everyone at Re_Set is with us because they believe in our mission and the positive impact we have through our work together. We are also experiencing strong demand for our services and perhaps more importantly, attracting the best talent. We walk the talk.

If indeed I am right in believing that the consultancy profession is on the verge of an existential crisis then my hope is that many reading this will follow our example and explore becoming a B Corp yourselves – or failing that, join one.

James Bidwell is the co-founder of consulting firm Re_Set and is a UK B Corp Ambassador.