Russell Herder has Become a Benefit Corporation

Thirty-three years ago, Russell Herder was founded with the belief that work should matter. And that success is more than a strong financial statement. Along the way, we’ve served clients who give back, and have done the same ourselves, hiring outstanding people, contributing meaningful pro bono work and living our mission every day.

Today, we’ve decided to take it a step further. As a cause-driven, for-profit business, Russell Herder has become a Benefit Corporation. We’ve changed our legal status to instill even greater transparency and commitment to the clients who choose to do business with us, to our people and to the causes we believe in.

There’s no limit to what talent and dedication can do.

When you think about the time, money and energy that goes into a typical campaign, it can represent a substantial investment. As a Benefit Corporation, we amplify the impact of our clients’ dollars, by matching 50% of our annual profit in equivalent time and services to worthy non-profit organizations. We roll up our sleeves, get involved, and encourage others to do the same.

Benefit Corporations are still a relatively new phenomenon. The following provides additional information about what b-corps stand for and why Russell Herder has become one.

What exactly is a Benefit Corporation?

A Benefit Corporation is a new type of corporation that voluntarily meets higher standards of purpose, accountability, and transparency. Having only been in existence in recent years, the designation stands for both doing well and doing good. In short, Benefit Corporations pursue financial profit and social impact with equal commitment, energy, and resources. They are required to consider the impact of their decisions not only on shareholders, but also on workers, community and the environment; and are required to issue an annual benefit report that documents their overall performance.

Benefit Corporation legislation created the legal framework to enable companies such as Russell Herder to create positive impact by institutionalizing good values, culture, processes and high standards. Patagonia, Aveda, Ben & Jerry’s, Burt’s Bees and Tom’s of Maine are examples that prove you can run a profitable business and have a social mission.

Is RH now a nonprofit?

No, Benefit Corporations are for-profit entities.

Why did RH decide to become one?

Becoming a Benefit Corporation was a logical, natural extension of who we are and what we do. For more than three decades, we’ve worked hard to share our talent and the rewards we’ve earned with organizations and causes we believe in. Becoming a Benefit Corporation simply took this commitment and responsibility to a new level. Our efforts are focused on making sure that we operate in a manner that’s consistent with our brand values.

What does this mean for clients?

What we do in our professional lives impacts those around us, just as much as the choices we make in our personal lives. As a client, you have the capacity to make a positive difference in the world by choosing to work with a Benefit Corporation like RH. The funds you invest in our firm are amplified at the backend through the contributions we make.

What’s this mean for the people who work at RH?

No one should have to make sacrifices to work for a company whose values they believe in. Benefit Corporations, therefore, have a mandate to provide a living wage and good working conditions for their employees. We attract the highly skilled talent that we do by offering our team the opportunity to make meaningful contributions to a better world simply by doing their jobs. Our team is also encouraged to give back through volunteerism and are given paid time off to do so.

What causes do you support?

Businesses can, and should, choose to go above and beyond to become a significant force for positive change. At RH, we believe we can make the greatest difference by sharing our most precious resource – time. Donating our creative and strategic expertise requires a level of commitment and sacrifice that transcends simply writing a check. We believe in financial contribution, but it’s no substitute for personal engagement. It’s why we match 50% of our annual profits in equivalent time and services to deserving causes.

Do you only work with nonprofits?

Absolutely not. We do work for not-for-profit entities including higher education entities, government, nonprofit causes and more, but we work with just as many or more for-profit companies. The common denominator is that our clients are good people who not only run successful businesses or organizations, they adhere to high standards and believe in doing what’s right for their employees and those they serve. Many also choose to give back to their communities, whether it be through corporate giving programs or volunteerism.

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