Building a Movement of Movements

10/31/2017
B Lab Piece

When The B Team was first established, B Team Leaders talked emphatically about accelerating existing efforts and building a movement of movements, with “consumers pushing and business leaders accepting” in the words of Natura Co-Founder, Guilherme Leal.

This notion is captured in the “B Movement,” bringing together purpose-driven organisations that hold a common ambition of shifting business models from maximising short-term profit for shareholders to maximising long-term benefit for all stakeholders, including people and our planet.

The B Team explored this idea further with B Lab, Sistema B and hundreds of B Corps at a panel at the annual B Corp Champions Retreat in Toronto earlier this month. The panel discussion envisaged a future that moves beyond symbiotic relationships to truly practice mutual reinforcement to accelerate the B Movement. This shift would push beyond critical thresholds to reach a tipping point in our global economy.

Participants imagined a future, not so far away, where a worldwide influencing network of 150 B Leaders advocate for bold action to address climate change, drive full transparency and advance dignity and human rights. This group would also work with the B Corp community to build an enabling environment for purpose-driven enterprise. One where capital flows toward long-term sustainable returns and legal systems encourage new corporate forms, like “for-benefit” enterprises that put people and planet at the center from the beginning.

Panelists imagined a movement of movements – an influencing force of eminent leaders, combined with the exemplary leadership, innovation and energy of thousands of B Corps, joining calls to action, influencing the attitudes, beliefs and behavior of consumers and demonstrating a better way of doing business.

The discussion marked just the beginning of a conversation, but many have already begun exploring how we might take some of these ideas forward. The B Team and Sistema B will be together at Encuentro+B in Sao Paulo over November 28 – December 1, joined by Guilherme and over 600 purpose-driven leaders, to discuss how B Corps in Latin America can help drive this systemic shift around the world.

These conversations, actions and partnerships are necessary to help shape a movement of movements. Together, we can help redefine the role of business in society.

Photo courtesy of B Corporation

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