News of the month for February had to be the announcement that Tactical Solutions has paved the way to B Corp status. So what does that mean for the agency and where does it go from here. Fieldmarketing.com put the questions to MD, Cathy Evans.
What was the main attraction of B Corp to Tactical Solutions?
We have always been a business that has been evolving and changing as our world and marketplace changes around us and we were looking at various initiatives that would allow us to create a strong sustainability action plan, become more deliberate about our inclusion and diversity agenda, and become better at communicating and involving a largely remote based team in the way we move forward as a business and the key decisions we make. What BCorp allowed us to do was to umbrella all our thinking and create a common goal and shape our ways of working . It pushed us to document and review our policies and decisions around our people, our communities, and our governance whilst also giving us a framework for sustainability , setting goals, and communicating this across the business. With a remote based team this helps support real engagement and everybody having a voice in decisions we make and to truly get involved in a way that was not as easy previously. We were really clear we didn’t just want a “badge” that said we were working in the right way but we wanted to live and breathe the vision of becoming a better business for our colleagues, our communities and the world.
What are the main satisfactions/benefits of running a business to meet B Corp standards?
It has been a huge personal career highlight for me becoming a B Corp certified business – not least that it has taken so long to get here , but it’s the recognition that what we are doing and what we have changed matters . It has taken a huge amount of work, commitment, resilience, and tenacity to make all the changes, to agree the goals and plans to ensure we improve on our score year on year but also to deliver on what we have set out to do. The benefits for us now are that many of our initiatives are measurable, we can be held to account on what we do and how we behave, and we have an amazing platform to really engage and take the entire business on that journey with us. We have always been a business that puts people first but now people have a real say and part to play in how we operate, how we engage our suppliers and work with our local communities to really make a difference. It also means we attract like minded individuals into the business who can really help increase our diversity and talent to lead us to the next level of operation.
Is B Corp certification the start, end or middle of the journey for the agency?
It is most certainly the start for us. We don’t pretend to have all the answers and be in a place where we are industry leading in every element of what we want to do. But – we have clear plans in place of where we want to be, what some of those milestones will be and real governance to introduce better policies and processes across so many areas. We are launching “B The Voice” internally which will help everyone across the business no matter where they work , or the role they play – to get involved , to have a say and help us deliver against our objectives within our pillars of people, communities and sustainability. We are very mindful we cannot stand still but need to work on how we improve our score , improve in areas that matter to our colleagues and areas that are important for communities. All of this takes time and effort and we are very aware that we need to be constantly evolving and developing in all areas if we are to live by the certification we have fought hard to attain.
What are good examples of workplace or environmental leadership from Tactical Solutions that have led to the agency being a B Corp pioneer in the FM sector?
My vision is about us focussing on several key initiatives and delivering well against these and involving as many of our colleagues as we can before setting out our plans for 2024 and beyond. We have a target as part of the 1.5 degrees challenge which means we have to reduce our emissions by 50% by 2030. We are working closely with Climate Partners to achieve this and currently we support a number of great charities that allow us to offset our carbon footprint and be carbon neutral but we want to do better than that longer term so are looking at initiatives such as electric vehicles, green energy etc. The charities we support include Clean cook stoves in Uganda and an Ocean Protection Programme where there is amazing work reducing plastic in our oceans to benefit us all.
In other areas we are working hard on our inclusion and diversity initiatives with the help of Grocery Aid, where last year we became a partner in their DIG programme. By being a Partner within the Diversity and Inclusion Initiative it has meant we have been able to work with many other brands and retailers to see what has worked for them and what hasn’t which has really helped us understand so much more about the challenges and the extensive remit that D&I covers. This has dovetailed well into our B Corp agenda and given us some real framework , tools and ideas that we have been able to put in place at Tactical Solutions – all with the purpose of making us a better business.