Our Better Business Bureau (BBB), serving Greater Maryland, celebrated its 100th anniversary last year, Now, it’s announcing the formation of the BBB Maryland Foundation (previously the BBB Educational Foundation), a 501(c)(3) organization. The mission of the retooled foundation is to help entrepreneurs build and sustain ethical businesses, and empower consumers and donors to buy and give with confidence.

A key foundation initiative is the organization’s Building Better Business Behavior (B4) program, which focuses on BBB’s eight Standards for Trust. The B4 curriculum is an unparalleled approach to outfit entrepreneurs with recipes for conduct. The flexible modules help fledgling businesses instill buyers’ trust and customer loyalty for long-term success.

The startup community is a vital part of Maryland’s economy, and BBB is working to support them in their efforts to grow their businesses. BBB’s mission has been to create an ethical marketplace where buyers and sellers trust each other, and this new addition of entrepreneurial business education will affect such positive change in our region.

Late last year, the foundation began utilizing BBB Standards for Trust, and real-life examples from its playbook of customer relations experience, to help Maryland’s entrepreneurs prepare their businesses for growth. The time-tested practices are backed by the latest market research and are offered at no cost to co-working groups, incubators and accelerators in the Baltimore metropolitan area.

“The B4 program gave me unique perspectives that I had not yet considered,” said Vera Moore of Apex Advantage, which has an office in Clarksville. “Although I am relatively new to business, the information provided will definitely help me when making decisions that involve integrity. BBB’s method of presentation was amazing too.”

To date, modules of the curriculum have been delivered in partnership with a number of organizations including The Cube Cowork, Impact Hub, the Small Business Association, the Baltimore Urban League and the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship, which is located in Columbia.

The foundation also has a new board of directors to complement its new mission and programs. The board is chaired by Bill Thrush, of Owings Mills-based Friedman, Framme & Thrush.
For more information, visit bbb.org.

Angie Barnett is president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Greater Maryland. She can be reached at 410-347-3990 and [email protected].