Apr 05 2021
Lead With Your Values
Last month, I wrote a guest blog for video producer extraordinaire Amy DeLouise about leading with your values. The gist of the blog was to remind organizational leaders that consumers are looking for values-aligned companies. More and more, savvy marketers understand that consumers are choosing products and services that meet more than a functional need. Consumers are choosing companies whose values align with theirs. So, if you’re responsible for your organization’s messaging, you may want to ask yourself: what is your company willing to stand up for? What beliefs are you willing to shout from the rooftops for the whole world to hear? Who wouldn’t you accept a check from? (You can read the whole blog here.)
In addition to publicizing your organizational values, it’s great to work with values-aligned partners. When my clients need add-on services, I seek partners like Amy DeLouise, DG Creative Branding, Fuller Digital Media, Generate Impact, and others who provide high-quality results while maintaining the utmost integrity. I know without a doubt that my vendors are honest, forthright, and fair, so I can recommend them without reservation. And as I demonstrated in that blog for Amy, doing the right thing not only feels good, it can lead to a very healthy bottom line.
Mar 18 2021
Happy B Corp Month
Jendi Coursey Communications is celebrating our one-year anniversary as a Certified B Corp, and what a year it’s been! During difficult times, we tend to find out what we’re made of, and navigating 2020 as a B Corp was a great exercise in keeping our values at the forefront of our work.
Whether we’re in the middle of a pandemic or enjoying a peaceful, uneventful year, and no matter who we’re working with or what type of project we’re working on, you can count on three things from us.
1. We will bring a can-do attitude to the endeavor.
2. We will tell the truth in service of excellence.
3. We will find ways to learn and grow and invite others to join us.
Education and Health Care Got Walloped
This year required a fair amount of crisis communication. Most of our clients are in health care and education, two industries that faced unprecedented challenges in 2020. School districts had to change their delivery model overnight when they were forced to close schools unexpectedly last March, and our healthcare clients were on the frontlines, doing everything they could to keep patients safe while processing huge volumes of ever-changing information about COVID-19.
No matter how crazy things got, we took each new challenge in stride, sometimes combatting persistent misinformation to help people make good decisions. We also had to deliver hard news at times, like telling our clients who were overwhelmed by their current workload that we wanted to help them reach out to even more people, expecially difficult-to-reach populations that didn’t speak English or use electronic means of communication. And to their credit, our clients stretched past their previous limitations and found new ways to connect.
We Used the B Corp Framework as a Guide
Our goal during the last 12 months was to help our clients communicate and collaborate with all of their stakeholders using approaches consistent with their values. We used the pillars of the B Corp framework–governance, workers, community, environment, and customers–to consider all the ways our clients intersect with their communities, and we encouraged our clients to make decisions and develop messaging with all those intersections in mind.
In our own work, being a B Corp keeps us accountable to rigorous social and environmental standards. Ultimately, B Corp certification is a challenge to make business a force for good in the world. Weathering a pandemic, a fractured economy, and political division has made so many of us reflect on our values and our purpose in new ways. We’re thankful that we were able to meet this moment with a solid foundation and with a like-minded community of other B Corps.
We’re Looking Forward to a Slightly Calmer Year
We’re especially grateful that we were able to support our clients through the last year and even grow our business. It meant the world to us to keep the team employed and supported. As it turns out, B Corps in particular were well-suited to navigating the challenges in 2020. It’s not so much that we were insulated from difficulties, it’s more that being a B Corp means having a common set of priorities: continuous improvement, accountability, leadership, and a long-term perspective.
Leaders at B Lab, the organization that manages B Corp certification, shared in their year-end reflection that “as members of a business community founded on the power of connections, B Corps have an opportunity to lead the way toward a more resilient and inclusive economy that works for all people and protects the future of the planet.”
It’s been a wild year, but we couldn’t think of a better time to be part of the B Corp community. Here’s to another year of being in it together!
Mar 10 2020
News Flash: We’re a Certified B Corp!
We just became Ukiah, California’s first Certified B Corporation, verifying that we meet the highest standards of social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. The certification provides public recognition that we are part of a global movement to use business a force for good, a movement that includes local businesses like Thanksgiving Coffee, North Coast Brewing Co., and Fetzer Vineyards, as well as international companies such as Patagonia and Ben & Jerry’s.
Becoming a B Corp has been a great process. It made us look at everything we do: which clients we choose, who our vendors are, how we treat employees, where we buy supplies—basically, it helps you incorporate your values into every decision you make.
March is B Corp month, so it is fitting that we made her announcement at this time. Led by the certifying organization B Lab (bcorporation.net), this is the month when Certified B Corps celebrate their positive social and environmental impacts and invite other companies to join the movement.
We learned about the B Corp movement several years ago, but personal challenges prevented us from pursuing certification until last year. I’m so grateful to my friend and amazing and consultant Heather Paulsen (hpaulsenconsulting.com) for helping us complete the B Impact Assessment and working with me to implement policies that hard-wired my deeply held values into the company. I’m also grateful for employee Kendyl Saxby’s consistent and thoughtful project management skills that were instrumental for successfully completing B Lab’s rigorous verification process.
Even if a company doesn’t certify, going through the B Impact Assessment is worthwhile. But, I’m really glad we are certified!
Jendi Coursey Communications (jendicoursey.com) focuses primarily on education and healthcare, though Coursey also enjoys working in other industries. The company provides public relations, crisis communication support, leadership training, and communication coaching. Clients include Mendocino Coast Clinics, Kelseyville Unified School District, Mendocino County Office of Education, and many more.