Becoming a B Corp: Interview with Guy & John

Vox Pops International became certified as a B Corporation right at the end of 2023. This is a significant accomplishment for us, but the process has been slow and tricky at times. In this Q&A, we speak with John, our Director of Operations, and Guy, our Post-Production manager, about the journey to where we are today as a B Corp company.

When did you decide to try and become a B Corp and what led you to that decision?

John: Actually it was Guy who looked into B-Corp in the first instance and he took the initiative to get things started. We felt that our outlook as a responsible corporate citizen aligned well with the principles of B-Corp and becoming certified is an acknowledgement of this. We also believe that our clients and prospects would prefer to support a B-Corp company like ours as part of their own corporate and supplier responsibility policies.

Guy: We’ve known about B-Corps ever since working with Innocent Drinks, when they first certified in 2018. But it was only in 2022, when becoming Employee Owned, that we thought about how we can better the company in alternative ways. After completing the initial questionnaire and finding out that we could be applicable, our hearts skipped a beat! We just had to go for it.

What challenges arose when trying for the B Corp certification?

John: The initial B-Corp questionnaire is extensive and covers corporate governance, workers, community involvement, environmental care and disclosure of any companies we work for that may be perceived as not aligning with B Corp principles such as tobacco companies which have environmental impacts. The whole process has taken nearly a year from when we first applied.
Guy: The B-Corp certification process is extensive and thorough – as it should be. They, near enough, wanted evidence for every response we put on our certification questionnaire from finances to HR documentation. But this filled me with pride knowing that once certified – we really were able to categorically say; ‘we meet their high standards’. ‘There are only 8200 B-Corps worldwide and we are one of them.’

What areas did we excel in and how?

John: We had an overall very good score, above the average and a good start as we intend to review opportunities to increase our outcomes and raise our level further. We came out well in Governance in view of what Vox Pops does to enhance policies and practices pertaining to its mission, ethics, accountability and transparency. We have always been highly focused on delivering excellent customer service and this has been a keen factor in our success over the years.

Guy: As a family run, small business, they way that staff have been treated has always been at the heart of who we are and what we do. We are people focussed; professionally and personally. Treating our staff fair; giving them a voice and enhancing their career passions falls into one of the key pillars of what a B-Corp should be, and that’s how we were able to become certified.

How will this certification impact our company mission moving forward?

Guy: Becoming a B-Corp has become such a milestone for us. A key milestone in our company’s 35+ year history. But the incredible factor about all of this is the energy and passion it has given to all of our staff. Everyone wants to do better, becoming a force for good. Our future goals are to become carbon neutral; to improve our B-Corp score. To greater help the charity sector in our local area as they need this more than ever. And finally, to inspire others into the good that they can also do.

John: We’re really proud to have achieved B-Corp Certification – it demonstrates that we are a worthy corporate citizen and attuned to the environmental and social issues faced in our society. Importantly, this is something which is becoming increasingly important to our client companies as part of their purchasing and supplier guidelines. Our staff are all fully on-board with the ethos of being a B-Corp and we will continue to seek out opportunities to be a better supplier, company and team.

We really feel every company should look at becoming B-Corp Certified as organisations have a responsibility to make a difference to their staff, stakeholders, the community and the environment.

Written By
Stephanie Earnshaw
Business Development Manager

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