Chicory Wealth is now an employee-owned certified B Corporation

by Liz McGeachy, Communications Director

 

No doubt everyone would admit that 2020 has been a life-changing year, but at Chicory Wealth, many of those changes have been for the good – perhaps you could even say “for the greater good.”

We’re excited to announce that, as of October, we have been designated a Certified B Corporation. At the same time we were going through the arduous “B Corp” assessment process (which took over a year), we restructured the ownership model of our firm to an employee-ownership model. We are extremely proud of both of these accomplishments and think our clients will be proud too.

If you don’t yet know about Certified B Corporations, we encourage you to learn, especially if you like to practice your values through the services you use and the purchases you make. It’s a growing community of 3,600 for-profit businesses in more than 70 countries and representing 150 industries dedicated to using business as a force for good. These businesses are certified by the nonprofit B Lab™ to meet rigorous standards of inclusivity and sustainability, and those who earn certification meet “the highest standards of social and environmental impact.”

“We are thrilled to be part of this community,” said Chicory Wealth CEO and Founder Maggie Kulyk. “Our mission is ‘Integrating Money and Meaning,’ so as a business, we have always been committed to social and environmental stewardship for ourselves and for our clients. Going through the intense B Corp assessment process only strengthened that resolve. We’re also hoping it will act as an impetus for other businesses to go through the process and for our clients to learn about the other businesses in the B Corp community.”

To become certified, we had to go through a lengthy assessment of our business practices, the environmental performance of our work and offices, how we treat our employees, the impact we’re having on our clients and the broader community, the standards we use to pick our suppliers, as well as our accountability, governance, and transparency practices. In addition, as a B Corp, we are legally required to consider the impact of our decisions on all stakeholders: customers, workers, communities, and the environment. We have always done this informally, but the certification process formalized and strengthened these practices.

The B Corp community is not stagnant – each corporation must reapply every three years. And B Lab is always changing and evolving the assessment to make sure the members don’t just sit on their laurels but continue to improve and evolve. We look forward being part of this ongoing process.

During the assessment process, we also decided to change our business ownership model. While we have been thinking about and discussing this idea for several years, the B Corp assessment helped us move forward. When Maggie Kulyk founded this financial advisory practice in 2002, she was originally on her own, adding staff gradually, and she remained the sole owner for many years. A few years ago, Financial Advisor Mary Shaltis bought a portion of the business, and this year we formally moved to an employee-ownership structure. Any employee (including advisors and administrative staff) may buy into the practice, as long as they have been with the company for at least three years.

“We believe this cooperative structure of ownership is more equitable and inclusive, and all the team members feel more invested,” said Mary Shaltis. “In addition to being the right thing to do, we believe it will increase the success and productivity of our practice and be better for our clients.”

We encourage our clients and friends to learn more about B Corporations by checking the website HERE. Take a look at all the companies who are part of this community and consider using their services. And keep an eye out for this emblem, because when you see it, you’ll know this company is walking the talk to make the world a better place.

 

 

 

 

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The information, analysis, and opinions expressed herein are for general and educational purposes only. Nothing contained in this commentary is intended to constitute legal, tax, accounting, securities, or investment advice, nor an opinion regarding the appropriateness of any investment, nor a solicitation of any type. Chicory Wealth makes no representation regarding the accuracy or completeness of information provided herein. All opinions and views constitute our judgments as of the date of writing and are subject to change at any time without notice.