Good Business and GOOD Business

A conversation with Jonathan Greenblatt and Jay Coen Gilbert GOOD: There is a range of media options available to you and many that are consumed by business people. I'm glad you want to work with us. GILBERT: GOOD has a unique voice and we believe it's that voice that will give the B Corp community..

A conversation with Jonathan Greenblatt and Jay Coen Gilbert

GOOD: There is a range of media options available to you and many that are consumed by business people. I'm glad you want to work with us.GILBERT: GOOD has a unique voice and we believe it's that voice that will give the B Corp community the chance to be heard beyond the choir. So why is GOOD doing GOOD Business?We saw an opportunity to draw upon our sensibility to cover this evolution of enterprises, businesses, and others. There's an absence of authenticity in the media land-scape, and we hope to lend a credible lens to consider the issues and the companies that are seeking to push boundaries and rethink core behaviors. We want to give voice to the growing community of conscious consumers who will punish a business that abandons its values, creating a market that will address discrepancies between theory and practice.Greenwashers only get "punished" if consumers have a way to tell the difference between a good company and just good marketing. Without standards, it's "just he said, she said."I guess that's where B Corp comes in. But was the marketplace really aching for a Better Business Bureau 2.0?We live in cynical times with overwhelming amounts of information. Brands help us cut through that, and certifications like ours build brands with meaning. I don't think perception is the issue-authenticity is the issue. Impact is the issue. We can't get either without independent third-party standards. So far, more than 130 companies-representing a billion dollars in collective revenue-have decided to become Certified B Corporations so they can maintain their missions as they grow and influence the market beyond their own success. The B ratings system is the tool used to assess the performance, not the intention, of B Corporations.I agree. There's tremendous value to developing new tools to measure impact and the efficacy of various methodologies. So then why is GOOD not a B Corp?A big factor was on the fundraising front. Part of our rationale was to take out any wrinkles and make it as easy as possible to raise capital. There was concern that B status might either confuse or put-off potential supporters.That's an understandable concern. Many B Corporations have gone through a similar process, and anything new requires explanation. But once explained, many investors, mainstream and social, have determined that incorporating the B Corp language into their company's articles can enhance value.How does it add value from an investor's point of view?It gives investors independent third-party assurance that the company will remain legally accountable to consider the impact of its decisions-not only on the short-term financial interests of the shareholder, but also to the long-term interests of employees, community, and the environment. No one has to believe the previous CEO or me; they can look to a transparent set of standards.So as B evolves into a well-understood and widely syndicated certification, almost like a Transfair seal, I could imagine that consumers would use it to differentiate between those businesses that talk about doing good and those that really walk the walk.Not just consumers, but investors, who want to ensure that the goodwill they invest in doesn't vanish. Authenticity and credibility are enhanced by independent third-party validation. This isn't new thinking. What is new is applying this thinking to a business as a whole, rather than to just a product.
via Chela Horsdal / Twitter

Amazon's "The Man in the High Castle" debuted the first episode of its final season last week.

The show is loosely based on an alternative history novel by Philip K. Dick that postulates what would happen if Nazi Germany and the Empire of Japan controlled the United States after being victorious in World War II.

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via Mike Mozart / Flickr

Chick-fil-A is the third-largest fast food chain in America, behind McDonald's and Starbucks, raking in over $10 billion a year.

But for years, the company has faced boycotts for supporting anti-LGBT charities, including the Salvation Army, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and the Paul Anderson Youth Home.

The Salvation Army faced criticism after a leader in the organization implied that gay people "deserve to die" and the company also came under fire after refusing to offer same-sex couples health insurance. But the organization swears it's evolving on such issues.

via Thomas Hawk / Flickr

The Fellowship of Christian Athletes explicitly announced it was anti gay marriage in a recent "Statement of Faith."

God instituted marriage between one man and one woman as the foundation of the family and the basic structure of human society. For this reason, we believe that marriage is exclusively the union of one man and one woman.

The Paul Anderson Youth Home teaches boys that homosexuality is wrong and that same-sex marriage is "rage against Jesus Christ and His values."

RELATED: The 1975's singer bravely kissed a man at a Dubai concert to protest anti-LGBT oppression

In 2012, Chick-fil-A's CEO, Dan Cathy, made anti same-sex marriage comments on a radio broadcast:

I think we are inviting God's judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, "We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage". I pray God's mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.

But the chicken giant has now decided to change it's says its charitable donation strategy because it's bad for business...Not because being homophobic is wrong.

The company recently lost several bids to provide concessions in U.S. airports. A pop-up shop in England was told it would not be renewed after eight days following LGBTQ protests.

Chick-fil-A also has plans to expand to Boston, Massachusetts where its mayor, Thomas Menino, pledged to ban the restaurant from the city.

via Wikimedia Commons

"There's no question we know that, as we go into new markets, we need to be clear about who we are," Chick-fil-A President and Chief Operating Officer Tim Tassopoulos told Bisnow. "There are lots of articles and newscasts about Chick-fil-A, and we thought we needed to be clear about our message."

RELATED: Alan Turing will appear on the 50-pound note nearly 70 years after being persecuted for his sexuality

Instead, the Chick-fil-A Foundation plans to give $9 million to organizations that support education and fight homelessness. Which is commendable regardless of the company's troubled past.

"If Chick-Fil-A is serious about their pledge to stop holding hands with divisive anti-LGBTQ activists, then further transparency is needed regarding their deep ties to organizations like Focus on the Family, which exist purely to harm LGBTQ people and families," Drew Anderson, GLAAD's director of campaigns and rapid response, said in a statement.

Chick-fil-A's decision to back down from contributing to anti-LGBT charities shows the power that people have to fight back against companies by hitting them where it really hurts — the pocket book.

The question remains: If you previously avoided Chick-fil-A because it supported anti-LGBT organizations, is it now OK to eat there? Especially when Popeye's chicken sandwich is so good people will kill for it?


Oh, irony. You are having quite a day.

The Italian region of Veneto, which includes the city of Venice, is currently experiencing historic flooding. Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro has stated that the flooding is a direct result of climate change, with the tide measuring the highest level in 50 years. The city (which is actually a collection of 100 islands in a lagoon—hence its famous canal streets), is no stranger to regular flooding, but is currently on the brink of declaring a state of emergency as waters refuse to recede.

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The Planet
via Gage Skidmore / Flickr and nrkbeta / flickr

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) dropped a bombshell on Tuesday, announcing it had over 900 emails that White House aide Stephen Miller sent to former Breitbart writer and editor Katie McHugh.

According to the SPLC, in the emails, Miller aggressively "promoted white nationalist literature, pushed racist immigration stories and obsessed over the loss of Confederate symbols after Dylann Roof's murderous rampage."

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via Twitter / Bye,Bye Harley Davidson

The NRA likes to diminish the role that guns play in fatal shootings by saying, "Guns don't kill people, people kill people."

Which is the same logic as, "Hammers don't build roofs, people build roofs." No duh. But it'd be nearly impossible to build a roof without a hammer.

So, shouldn't the people who manufacture guns share some responsibility when they are used for the purpose they're made: killing people? Especially when the manufacturers market the weapon for that exact purpose?

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