Every day, we make dozens of decisions. Research suggests that the average person makes 200 decisions per day relating to food intake alone! Sometimes our decisions align with our individual values and convictions, but other times—intentionally or not—we make decisions that contradict them.
Institutions face the same moral dilemmas when it comes to decision making. Corporations and governments generally have a set of values that are supposed to drive their decisions; however, history has proven time and again that institutions are willing to compromise those values and rationalize their decisions when it suits their short-term interests.
Savhera is different. We are registered as a public benefit corporation (and in the process of getting B-Corp certified). This means that our strategic interest is not merely a single bottom line (profit), but a triple bottom line: people, planet, and profit. In other words, our values and our strategic interests are aligned, allowing us to operationalize our strategic plan with fidelity to our values!
- People. Savhera exists to provide survivors of human trafficking with dignified employment and consumers with organic, 100% pure essential oils that are good for them and the Savhera employees that they’re supporting. Savhera will always put people first. For our employees, that means a living wage, quality health care, and an environment that respects and facilitates their inherent gifts and abilities. For our customers, that means premium products at fair prices from a transparent and accountable company. For our suppliers and other partners, that means fair terms, clear communication, and collaborative innovation. We value people. Period.
- Planet. Savhera’s essential oils are USDA certified organic not only because we want our consumers to enjoy the highest quality essential oils, but also because we believe that stewarding the earth is the only responsible way to do business. There are serious concerns about sustainability within the essential oil industry, and one way to minimize environmental impact is to grow organically. Not only that, but Savhera’s starter kit boxes are made with 100% biodegradable cotton paper, and our mailers are 100% post-consumer recycled (and recyclable) material. It is more expensive, less convenient, and much less expeditious to do business sustainably, but our values demand it.
- Profit. No business is economically sustainable without a profit. In the absence of profit, we cannot scale our social impact. We would not be able to continue to provide more jobs to more women. We would not be able to provide wages that are double the living wage that include excellent benefits. In the absence of profit, we would not be able to support the extra expense of operating in an environmentally sustainable manner. In other words, profit is the fuel that allows us to reinvest for scaling our social and environmental impact.
Our values—and the triple bottom line to which we adhere—provide the litmus test for every decision we make. This means we sometimes have to make tough decisions, decisions that are less expedient and less convenient. But it’s who we are, and, as Socrates said, “to know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.”