[Podcast] B-Corp, a company with a mission and the PACTE Law: what results?

What does it mean to be labeled a BCorp for a company? What changes to expect after the PACTE law? What improvements can companies with a mission make? Benjamin Enault, spokesperson for B-Corp Europe, answers these questions in episode 12 of the Trajectory podcast.

Faced with the crises it produces, capitalism tries to make its own revolution and, finally, acquire a form of social and environmental responsibility. Increasingly, reflections are structured around the idea that economic actors should not only produce economic wealth, but also social and environmental value, contribute to the general interest and development of society.

Through notions like CSR, the raison d’être, the company with a mission, companies are trying to be part of a proactive transformation process. In this episode of the Trajectoire podcast, Caroline Renoux welcomes Benjamin Enault, member of the People4Impact community and spokesperson for the BCorp community at European level, to focus on these issues, and in particular the B-Corp label, but also the company with a mission and the Covenant Law.

The PACTE law, and then what?

In 2019, France adopted unprecedented legislation on corporate responsibility. By transforming the definition of a company in the Civil Code, and by affirming the need to take into account social and environmental issues in the activity of private organizations, the PACTE Law brought about a conceptual change. From now on, the company can provide itself with a “reason for being”, become a “company with a mission”, that is, inscribe in its statutes the desire to contribute positively to the overall performance of the socio-economic system. economic.

Problem: the PACTE Law is neither binding nor mandatory, nor does it create a systematic and coherent reading grid to measure the company’s contribution to society. For the time being, as they exist, the tools arising from the PACTE Law are declarative.

However, to really change the economic model and, finally, achieve an ecological transition worthy of the name, facing the great social challenges of today, we need more than words, we need concrete actions.

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B-Corp: A model for measuring overall performance

To act, you don’t just need a direction, a direction, which can be embodied by the company’s raison d’être and mission. We need a method, a guide, that makes it possible both to accurately measure its contribution to society (its impacts) and to act to improve this contribution. This is where the B-Corp label can come in handy.

Born in the United States, the B-Corp seal requires companies that wish to be certified to answer a specific questionnaire to assess their impact. It then allows you to go into details of the organization’s economic model and can be used to implement a coherent action plan to improve its impacts, its governance. Under the B-Corp seal, companies move from being aware (respecting regulations and standards) to being aware (going beyond expectations, proposing a vision and concrete actions).

Each certified company must reach a minimum level of performance: therefore, it is no longer just a declarative issue, but a concrete one.

A constantly improving label

More and more companies are joining this bandwagon of mission-driven companies or B-Corp labels, and little by little, the trend is taking shape. Europe is not very advanced in this area, native to the United States, but little by little, the codes are transmitted. The European B-Corp movement is becoming increasingly important and with the Green Deal, synergies can quickly emerge and form the basis for a truly sustainable transformation of the economic world.

Control, rules, precise standards will have to emerge to structure this transformation and not let it stagnate, as it often does in the field of communication and business as usual. Meanwhile, companies that have been able to take the leap from companies that place global meaning and performance at the center of their activities will be the ones best able to face the challenges of today and even more those of tomorrow.

Check out the podcast here to learn more.

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