09: Bill Huggins

bill huggins

To get involved with Best for PHL, go to their website and sign up for a workshop!


Show Notes

  • Bill Huggins is the Project Manager at Best for PHL

  • Best for PHL has  only been running workshops since late 2016

    • Since then 175 have participated and 108 are community members (meaning they have implemented some of the steps)

  • Best for PHL is an initiative of Impact PHL

    • Impact PHL is a nonprofit trying to get investments in the impact economy in Philly

    • The impact economy is essentially using business as a force for good

  • Best for PHL is a way for businesses to have a positive impact in their community

    • Workers

    • Community (Such as hiring from within the community)

    • Environment

  • The heart of Best for PHL is the Challenge Workshop:

    • It’s a 30-45 minute assessment a company can take to identify areas of success and areas for improvement

    • Then take one of the areas for improvement and make it an actionable goal

  • Best for PHL wants to push businesses toward more impactful things in the next year

  • Bill is also the Research and Project Management Analyst for Strategy Arts, a strategic consulting firm

    • Strategy Arts is a founding B-Corp

  • B-Labs has done work internationally, but is based in Berwyn, PA

    • The quick assessment Best for PHL uses is a slightly altered version of B-Labs assessment

    • Their mission is for businesses to be a force for good

    • B-Corp certification is a set of criteria regarding environmental impact, community impact, and other impacts

  • There are other “Best for” cities in the US, but Bill feels that Philadelphia is unique in its hands on approach

    • Most cities have a very DIY “Best for” assessment

    • But Philadelphia has in person workshops with people from different industries all in one room

  • Bill thinks one of the biggest challenges Best for PHL faces is turning the post-workshop excitement into real transformational change

  • Not only is the Best For Challenge good philosophically, but it will also help your business

  • Bill and I have the same Alma Mater, Rowan University with a degree in Sociology and Journalism

    • He graduated in 2008

    • He worked as a lobbyist for the Southern New Jersey Development Council

    • He moved to NYC to work for the Center on Government Performance

    • Bill is originally from South Jersey

    • In his current positions he deals with a lot of data and numbers

    • He learned to crunch data during his time spent as a research assistant in the Sociology Department at Rowan

  • One of Bill’s passions is pulling a story out of the numbers

  • Bill just moved to Philadelphia in June and now lives in the Port Richmond neighborhood

  • Bill loves Philly because people are more personable and neighborly here than in NY

  • Best for PHL’s plan for the next year is to reconnect with businesses that have taken the challenge to assess and improve the program

    • They want to be another value add to Philadelphia’s impact economy

    • They also want to push new businesses toward taking more impactful steps such as:

      • Decreasing energy usage

      • Purchasing from local suppliers

  • Best For is meant to be a “one size fits all” program, meaning that any enterprise from a 1 person consulting company to a Fortune 500 can participate

    • Bill met a woman at an event right after he first started who felt that she couldn’t work with “Best For” because she ran her own salon and didn’t think she could participate

    • Bills response was “No, you’re exactly the person we want to think about this that never has before.”

    • Perhaps your business can’t have a huge environmental impact, but you can hire from within the community in which you operate

  • Bill wants business owners to know that they can join Best for PHL for recognition of the impact work they’re already doing

  • Bill thinks Philly is going to continue on its upward trajectory

  • Best for PHL isn’t just involved in Philadelphia proper, but also the surrounding area

  • Best For is free, and won’t flood your inbox with spam, but work with you to help you improve!