Why did we choose to become B Corp?

Eddie Mills
Managing Director, UK

We could fly less, our maternity policy needs improving and we didn’t make the progress around DE&I that we said we would at the beginning of our last financial year. On the face of it, a strange opening salvo for a thought piece marked on the content calendar to celebrate our recent B Corp accreditation. Conversely, it feels like the only way to start.

When we say that becoming a certified B Corp marks the beginning of our journey, we mean it and this goes hand in hand with something I am steadfast about – transparent and honest communication. Against the backdrop of what was an uncertain global market, I lost count of the amount of months I stood in front of the Agency and did what I dare say a lot of other Agency leaders had to last year – shared challenging financial results whilst retaining and projecting an air of optimism. Our progress after joining a community committed to using business as a force for good will be communicated in the same, unwavering style.

The point being, Hue & Cry is not utopia. We are an independent, unique, sometimes charmingly chaotic, collection of diverse and insanely talented people from both sides of the pond, who are hell bent on a mission to produce head turning work in a way that not only protects the natural resources we have at our disposal but enriches the lives of people everywhere – colleagues, clients, consumers and communities.

Our score of 91.4 represented not only the hard work and dedication of a team that fully engaged with the year-long process, but also the progress we had made up to that point. It leaves us with a firm commitment to a triple bottom line if you like of people, planet and profit, the first two of which are inextricably linked. If you are struggling to see how, the plight of indigenous people the world over or the daily reality of garment workers whose underpaid hours produce the fast fashion that is flown all over the world in a race to satisfy our insatiable thirst for looking good as the ship goes down, are good places to start.

And it’s where I’ll start as we are building a culture at Hue & Cry that places its people at the heart of everything we do. From creating a new Leadership Team that gives colleagues the autonomy to lead and influence culture development, monthly awards in line with our values, the revision of holiday policy that increases with time, and a volunteering programme, to the launch of our very first Culture Survey (the anonymous results of which were shared openly with the Agency and used as the blueprint to create this year’s plan), we are matching words with action. The days of work and life being neatly compartmentalised are long gone, so we are creating an environment that allows all colleagues to work in a way that recognises life doesn’t stop happening when you walk into the office or tentatively open Teams. An environment where people are empowered to do their best work, show up authentically, and feel the security to fail.

I regularly see brands choosing not to communicate the great initiatives they are working on through fear of being pulled up for the things they aren’t doing, but at what opportunity cost? In a political environment of baloney, missed targets and broken promises, the world is increasingly looking to the private sector to break free of its shackles and do what it does best – create, inspire and generate growth that can be the catalyst for pulling the planet back from the brink. Silence is not an option.

As we launch a raft of strategic and creative services designed to help brands shake off this fear in a way that drives sustainable success, it’s a mantra that we will be living as we embark on the next stage of our journey as a certified B Corp. A perfectly imperfect journey, with a people driven, heartfelt commitment to continue the incredible progress we have made, be honest enough to admit where we could do better and clearly communicate how and when we are going to get there.

Come join us.