As a values-driven business, and one that encourages other organisations to work in concert with the environment and their communities, Twelve Winds is committed to being a responsible corporate citizen. This means that we live our values in what we do, in how we work, and in our community.

“Twelve Winds was founded on the principle that companies are inextricably linked to the communities in which they operate. It just makes good business sense to behave as responsible and valuable citizens in those communities. Being a B Corp helps us live up to our values, and serve as an example for our clients.”
Wayne Myslik, Managing Director, Twelve Winds Consulting

B Corp Certification

B Impact ReportIn August 2015, Twelve Winds Consulting proudly became a Certified B Corporation and a Founding Member of B Corporation in the United Kingdom because we believe that business should be a “force for good.”

The first step to becoming a B Corp is completing the ‘B Impact Assessment’. The highest possible score is 200, and you need a minimum score of 80 to be eligible for B Corp certification. Our final impact report score was 98.

The impact assessment is very detailed, covering questions in five key areas: governance, workers, community, environment and impact business models. It includes everything from our high-level values, ambitions and business practices to very specific details like employee benefits, recycling habits and even the type of cleaning products we use at the office!

Being a B Corp reinforces our values, supports our ability to help our clients think differently and more broadly about their businesses, and helps us fulfill our responsibility to be a contributing member of the communities in which we operate. We would love to see more B Corp partners in our network and welcome the opportunity to talk with you about our “Being a B Corp” journey and how it can help all of us profitably build a more sustainable world.

Environmental Impact

As a professional services firm our environmental impact is small compared with many other industries. But we are committed not just to minimising our impact, but also leading the way as an example for our clients, suppliers, and other businesses.

Our operational impact comes mostly from carbon emissions generated by energy use in our offices and by some of our key suppliers.  So our environmental programme focuses on two areas: choosing a green location for our offices and monitoring our overall carbon footprint so we can work with our suppliers to mitigate our environmental impact.

Sustainable Offices

Twelve Winds has chosen as its home East Village, a new neighbourhood created from the 2012 London Olympics Athletes’ Village. From the very beginning, sustainability has been at the heart of East Village: sustainable design; sustainable construction; sustainable materials. The word came up time and again as the East Village plans came together.

East Village buildings feature smart insulation and are specially designed to eliminate draughts and avoid fluctuating temperatures – measures that should save over 183,000 tonnes of carbon annually. The use of LED lights reduces CO2 emissions by around 5,000 tonnes each year. Our heating systems are 90% efficient.

Outside, living green and brown roof gardens have been planted on all buildings over 100m high to complement and preserve the local environment. And a biomass power station on site delivers renewable energy and heat to the village – all part of earning the neighbourhood a Level 4 in the Code for Sustainable Homes and high BREEAM ratings.

The nearby East Village Wetlands – the largest new wetlands in Western Europe – are at the heart of an extensive water recycling programme that should help to dramatically cut local water usage.

wetlands

Inside buildings, smart innovations are saving water. Grey water recycling systems capture water from sinks, showers and baths so it can be used again for things like flushing toilets, as well as for irrigating East Village and helping the nearby wetlands to flourish. Water treatment and water conservation ideas like this mean we’re on track to meet our goal of reducing water consumption to 105 litres per person, per day. That means that a third less water will be used per person in East Village homes, compared to the UK average.

Carbon Management

Twelve Winds Consulting takes carbon management seriously. That’s why we work with Carbon Analytics to manage not just the impact of our operations, but of our entire supply chain.

Materiality is the guiding principle that directs our carbon reduction efforts. We focus on the areas of our operations and supply chain that contribute the biggest impact to our overall carbon footprint. We refer to these material areas as our hot spots.

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We identify carbon “hot spots” by benchmarking the “carbon intensity” of our suppliers and our operations (e.g. how much CO2 is generated for every GBP ‘000 invested in a given area).For each hot spot identified in our business, we use Carbon Analytics to:

  • Connect with providers of low carbon products and services that can reduce our impact in those areas
  • Find alternative suppliers with a lower carbon intensity (e.g. more local, more energy efficient) to augment our operations
  • Onboard and work with our existing suppliers to reduce their carbon intensity

In the process, not only are we addressing our carbon footprint, but we are helping to fuel the low carbon economy.

Keeping global carbon emissions under control requires all companies to act. We contribute by recruiting our key suppliers and other stakeholders to join in our carbon management efforts, by sharing information and working as a team to reduce our net impact.

Stakeholder Engagement

As a values-driven business, and one that encourages other organisations to work in concert with their communities, Twelve Winds is committed to communicating with and listening to our stakeholders.

We’re great believers in working with others to ensure that Twelve Winds is a responsible corporate citizen. We see real value in partnering with external organisations and building relationships that help to achieve this.

Our stakeholders include everyone who is affected by our business, and everyone who affects it. This includes employees, customers, suppliers, civil society organisations, policy makers, and those living in the communities where we operate.

We use a range of media to communicate with our stakeholders. These include face-to-face meetings and events as well as sharing information about our achievements, performance and successes on our websites and social media channels.

And because we are committed to building relationships, we know that real two-way dialogue is an important part of stakeholder engagement. We listen to, and respond to, the concerns of our stakeholders through our social media channels. And in the near future, we plan to develop a formal stakeholder survey that will help us gather both qualitative and quantitative input that will inform our strategic direction and our day-to-day performance.

Maintaining a regular dialogue allows us to understand their expectations of us as a responsible and sustainable business. The feedback we receive from external stakeholders informs our judgment about sustainability priorities for our business and challenges us to do better.
For our stakeholders, it is a chance to be heard, and to influence the way we conduct our business.

Supporting the Community

We are passionate about being part of the communities we are privileged to serve. It’s a way of engaging, developing ourselves as individuals, understanding the needs of others and also, having fun.

Our community involvement takes three forms: pro bono work, staff volunteering, and charitable donations.

Charitable Donations

Twelve Winds is committed to working with the communities where we operate, so we have committed to donating a percentage of our profits to charity every year. Our support centres around three key issues that are fundamentally linked to our corporate values: promoting environmental sustainability, helping disadvantaged young people into entrepreneurship, and supporting local communities in the East End of London.

Some of the organisations we have supported include:

Pro Bono

Pro bono means for the public good; it is the provision of services for deserving causes.

As well as offering discounted fees to charities and social enterprises, delivering pro bono services is an important part of how we help our communities thrive. By sharing the skills of our people, we help enable non-profits to achieve their missions and serve our communities.

At Twelve Winds, although our pro bono work is provided for free, it is approached with the same dedication and care as billable work. It offers our consultants an opportunity to serve the community and to apply the knowledge, insight and experience gained through pro bono work to their other client work.

We encourage and support all of our staff to be involved in pro bono work, recognising that it brings with it new experiences and insight for those who take part – and our staff tell us that they value this opportunity.

Some of the organisations we have supported with pro bono work include:

Board Seat Programme

Twelve Winds recognises that many of the community organisations working on the important social and environmental challenges that are close to our corporate mission struggle to find people with the professional skills needed to support decisionmaking.

Like all organisations, charities need a governing body or board to direct its strategy and activities and this is where the role of trustee fits in.

Trustees may be known as directors, board members, governors or committee members of a charity. They are responsible for directing the activities of the charity, ensuring it remains solvent and well-managed and delivering the outcomes for which the charity was set up.

Twelve Winds is committed to supporting the valuable work of schools, charities, and community organisations by providing our staff with the opportunity to volunteer as a trustee or governor.

Some of the organisations on whose Boards the Twelve Winds staff have served recently:

Volunteering

Providing our colleagues with the opportunity to volunteer in the community is an important part of our approach to working at Twelve Winds. We want to make a meaningful difference to the communities in which we operate.

In recognising that community organisations are attempting to address particular socio-economic or environmental challenges in society we can provide support in a variety of ways that will help organisations to deliver their goals.

We provide a range of opportunities for colleagues to enable everyone to use their professional and personal skills to the benefit of the organisation they are volunteering for, as well as for themselves and the firm.

Volunteering may typically involve coaching, mentoring, membership of committees, or imparting of particular professional skills and we provide a range of opportunities that enable colleagues to live our values.