B Corp Twente: the art of initiating!

Joris Krabbenborg, Marketing & E-commerce Manager at Carel Lurvink, begins the conversation about his experiences with B Corp Twente: “I come from the time of the old economy and profit maximisation. B Corp Twente is interesting to me because I have learnt to look at value differently. I have discovered that growth is about more than just finance.”

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In short

  • Business models of companies can be used more and more to create social impact. 
  • That is why BCorp Twente was founded. A quality label for entrepreneurs who, in addition to profit, also take people, the environment and society as a starting point, and therefore have a meaningful business. 
  • Carel Lurvink is participating to develop their CSR policy further

“The cooperation with the other participants, such as Maurice Beijk, who works at ReintenInfra as Rentmeester2050 (Steward2050), Bas van der Geest and Erwin Tappel, has certainly given me other and inspiring insights into how we can realise multiform value at Carel Lurvink. I can see that we are already doing many great things when I look at our organisations from the B Corp standard. We could, however, improve on the burden of proof. We talk about it, have a clear vision and are already working with it, but we do not always document it properly. We can still make progress, especially when it comes to deciding our position towards the outside world”, says Joris.

Green takes action

We joined the B Corp Twente Project with an open mind, thinking it would allow us to develop our CSR policy further. The strength of this CSR policy lies in its apparent simplicity. Carel Lurvink’s CSR policy has been worked out on four A4 sheets, based on their motto ‘Green takes action’. “This characterises us”, says Joris. “We start with the art of initiating and just see what happens. It’s the same regarding the B Corp standard. We started working with the B Corp workbook enthusiastically, as developed by Saxion and Eshuis. We sat down with the management team as a result of this first exploration to see what we want to do with the meaningful entrepreneurship that we advocate. We concluded we want to have the way we work tested externally, out of intrinsic motivation. We are looking at various certifications, including the B Corp certification, the CSR Performance Ladder, the CO2 Performance Ladder, the Social Entrepreneurship Performance ladder and the Most sustainable company in the Netherlands. We will choose the type of certification that suits us the most in the spring of 2021.”

Everyone deserves a clean and safe work environment

“Looking back, I can see that the B Corp Twente project helped us to look beyond the more specific CSR. The B Corp standard forces you to look at things from different angles, encompassing the entire business model. This becomes even more evident if you look at it from the CSR’s perspective, which quickly links to the environment and therefore, to the ecological value. Still, it overlooks other values such as the social and societal impact we have as Carel Lurvink. Our ambition is ‘Everyone deserves a clean and safe work environment’ for a reason, and we are allowed to call ourselves ‘Supplier to the Royal Court’ as a family business. We are also making serious work of the aforementioned ambition. For example, we went litter picking with the staff before we had our last staff party (before the corona crisis).” This did not go unnoticed at home, says Joris with a smile: “My seven-year-old daughter Wiep recently wanted to organise her own “Clean-up Day”, and this resulted in her clearing away an entire bag of rubbish from the park. It was great to see how happy this made her. It should be a part of their education. I also noticed that it makes you more aware of this as a parent.”

Dare to initiate and keep it simple!

Joris was also asked what advice he has for other entrepreneurs, and he gives the following tips: “Dare to initiate and keep it simple.” He says this also applies to the use of the B Corp standard. “Just start using it and discover what it can and cannot bring you. Just start and be amazed! That was the case for us as well. B Corp turned out to be much broader than we expected. This motivated us to further develop our CSR policy and consider how we want to have it assessed next year.

Date: 26 January 2021
Source of tekst: Bcorp
Author: Bcorp

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