I’m a big supporter of being assertive and speaking up. I’m a former journalist in a family of journalists. I started out as a first amendment lawyer. And as a compliance professional I work to help businesses encourage speaking-up in their ranks, as a powerful tool for both operational and ethical excellence. (So I’m super proud of my new article on training that encourages reporting, written with Amy McDougal, JD, CCEP, CA for the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics.)
But I am not a big fan of terms like “cancel culture.” These days there are soap boxes aplenty. The issue is more, who is really listening? And is that talk seeking truth, or just victory? It’s complicated, right?
These were the topics I was proud to discuss with an insightful, civil and politically diverse panel that tried to get to the heart of our freedom to speak up in the current environment. The panel was presented by Thomson Reuters on March 25, 2021. This is the second time TR honored me with a request to talk about this critical topic.
We have a timely present for your business or organization.
I was chatting last week with several of my good friends in the compliance sector: Nicole Rose of CreateTraining, the Australia-based education and training company that has produced several powerful animations for LeadGood clients; Richard Bistrong of CEO Front-Line Anti-Bribery LLC, the well-known anti-bribery consultant and speaker; and my frequent colleague and project partner Amy McDougal, JD, CCEP, of CLEAResources, a leading compliance program consultant. We share a deep belief, borne of professional experience, in the power of shared values to inspire people to do great things.
We found we also shared a desire to use what we do at work to somehow help organizations respond to the Coronavirus in a different, honest, but inspiring way — acknowledging that we are in it for the long-haul, and that for as long as it takes, we will have each others’ backs.
The result is this video, which we now offer to you to use as much as you want, however you see fit. Think of it as a video greeting card you can send to your teams, clients, and community. Consider yourself licensed to use it as you wish, to shorten it, to add your own message or logo, to make it yours – please distribute it as broadly as you’d like, just keep the credits at the end. (Nicole is happy to do edits, etc., if you wish, and even to change the voiceover from my voice to her Australian lilt.)
If you want to use this video and need help downloading the file, just contact me and I’ll be delighted to assist.
We hope this video helps your business say what you’re thinking to the people you care about, and and it helps us all stay steadfast.
On Tuesday morning, September 17, Amy McDougal and I will update and reprise our presentation on “Compliance by Contract – Drafting and Negotiating Terms for Peer-to-Peer Compliance.” (It was a big hit when we last did it a few years back.) When you negotiate a commercial contract that includes terms about compliance — whether with customers, contractors, vendors or suppliers — the right terms can boost your own C&E program, and the wrong terms can undermine it. So we’ll share our experiences as lawyers and compliance pros, exchange pitfalls and engage in facilitated exercises. The goal: getting everyone better at closing good deals that support great compliance programs
Then on Wednesday, September 18, I’ll be leading a workshop on Counseling Compliance in Small to Medium Sized Organizations. which make up 97% of US companies. We will explore the unique challenges (and opportunities) of compliance leadership in SMBs — and nonprofits and governments — where budgets and headcount are limited, processes informal, and executive power dominant. The workshop will take place from 10:15 to 11:45.
If you work in compliance or ethical leadership, you’ll get a real charge from the colleagues and camaraderie at #SCCEcei. Hope you can see it!
I greet the college basketball championships this year with mixed emotions. As a hoop fan, this is a highlight of the calendar. As an ethics and compliance professional considering the current pay-for-recruitment scandal at several leading schools, well, what a mess.
But from both perspectives, Tom Fox and I have decided to mark the beginning of “March Madness” with a reprise of our live web-chat we call, “Ethics Madness.”
6, starting at 2 PM (Eastern) and going until 6:00 (at least). Join me, Tom Fox, Matt Kelly, and other guests as we discuss current issues in compliance and ethics, including compliance in sports and education, and sports as a metaphor and lesson for corporate C&E efforts, as well as the cultural messages about ethics and compliance that a typical NCAA viewer is receiving – in the ads, during the games, and real-time in social media.
We might talk about other E&C topics. And judging from last time, we’ll talk a little hoop, too!
And throughout the tournament, let’s all resolve to share our E&C thoughts by using the hashtag #EthicsMadness.
Face it, you want a way to watch the First Round afternoon games without feeling guilty. So here it is! (But follow us even if you’re stuck at your desk – I’ll be sure to pass along the key scores along with our pithy, pointed, and (I hope) useful thoughts.)
Love Compliance? Love #MarchMadness? Then here’s a fun way to combine the two!
LeadGood is hosting a “live blog” panel discussion on our LeadGood Live! page on Friday afternoon (not coincidentally, during the First Round NCAA Men’s Basketball games). Join me, Tom Fox, Leona Lewis, and other compliance and ethics leaders as we discuss…
Compliance in Sports – there’s a lot to talk about, from FIFA to tennis, Penn State to UNC, concussions to doping, the brackets etc.
Sports as a lesson and metaphor for corporate C&E efforts – the influence of money, cultural framing, teamwork, coaching, etc.
The cultural messages about ethics and compliance that a typical NCAA viewer is receiving – in the ads, during the games, and real-time in social media. (Remember the Coke ad that advocated lying to your boss? Or this year’s Super Bowl ad that touted the Prius as the care of choice for bank robbers?)
And yes, we might talk a little Hoop, too!
You can follow our discussion — and add your own comments! We’ll start at 2:00 PM and keep it going until at least 6 PM Eastern, and very likely until the afternoon games wrap up a little later.
And throughout the tournament, let’s all resolve to share our E&C thoughts by using the hashtag #EthicsMadness.
Face it, you’ve always wanted a way to watch the First Round afternoon games without feeling guilty. So here it is! (But follow us even if you’re stuck at your desk – I’ll be sure to pass along the key scores along with our pithy, pointed, and (I hope) useful thoughts.)
If you are watching the “Big Game” Sunday Feb. 7 (or the “Big Pre-Game” or the “Big Post-Game”), and a pithy thought pops into your head about ethics, or compliance, or business leadership and culture, please join me in using the hashtag #SB50Ethics. And if you just want to see what E&C oriented folk are thinking, then follow #SB50Ethics.
No pressure. It’s not a live-blog, something happening every 30 seconds, must write thing. Just thought I’d suggest a single social media home for our collective musings, however casually they are offered.
Will we really be thinking about ethics between the wings, beer, and commercials, you ask? Oh, yeah.
An advance workshop on drafting and negotiating contracts with compliance provisions — this would take the next step from the compliance contract panels that Amy and I did at the CEI in 2014 and this year.
“The Good Reasons Why People Do the Wrong Things” — Exploring the frequent instances when people follow their own ethical code and choose to break rules. (Think about teachers or nurses following their deep ethic of care.) The lesson: it’s not just greed or “bad guys” that lead to misconduct.
“Fostering a Speak-Up Culture: What Really Works” — Now more than ever, it’s critical for compliance professionals and business leaders to focus on what, objectively, has worked best to foster and maintain a culture in which people report suspected wrongdoing freely, constructively, and internally. So how do you make that happen?
I wish they’d let us do all three of them! So tell me, what’s your favorite?
In honor of the end of baseball season, I am recalling (and revising) some thoughts I originally posted last fall— and adding some pictures. Hope this takes you out to the ball game.
By Wednesday, the Major League season will come to its last glorious inning. And this afternoon, my son will catch the last game of the year for his Babe Ruth League team, ending a long string of seasons and games that began in March. So
Doing what I do, every time I leave the clean white chalk powder on the rusty matte of the base paths, I think to myself, “Even here, even now, I’m leading compliance!”
Does that make me Mister Baseball Buzzkill? Yeah, maybe so. But I think there is a parallel between the Compliance Officer and the Groundskeeper.
I mean, compliance is in large part about winning while staying inside the lines. And for an organization, who paints those lines?
Government? Regulators? An industry Code? Your Code of Conduct? Sure, but not precisely.The Rules of the Game may specify that the foul line extends from the first base line and the third base line. But it is still the compliance team that has to paint the lines precisely.
To push my metaphor way too far, compliance leadership has to decide the slope of the base path, and the tendency of slow grounders to stay in bounds or to roll foul. And to abandon the realism of my metaphor, we have to decide whether to paint the lines on our own field with a little cushion, so minor fouls don’t really cross the legal line… or paint the lines wide, to give our organizations a bigger playing field but also a bigger risk of stumbling out of bounds.
But most of all, as compliance leaders we have to do the painting. The Rules may say where the foul line should be, but the players would be left to just guess what’s foul and what’s not if we didn’t draw an actual line that they can see while they are playing. Our teammates rely on our education programs, our communications, and our internal enforcement to know where the dividing line falls.
Frankly, I can think of times when my base lines left something to be desired, straightness-wise. The umpire might have checked to see how I drew the line (or he might not have), but once play began, he relied on the white line I put down in chalk. It’s a big responsibility.
So you can picture me standing out there today, superimposing all these philosophical musings about work onto our national pastime. Then you can picture my son pointedly reminding me that the game is about to begin, and that I need to get my carcass off the field, and help coach my players to success.
For any fellow Princeton Alumni who are planning on attending Reunions this year… I am honored to be the Moderator for a panel discussion being sponsored by my class, the most excellent Class of 1980. Come by next Friday and listen in!
Around the World in ‘80 Ways: ‐
Stories of Globalization in the Age of Digitization
3:45 PM to 5:00 PM
Friday, May 29, 2015
Many members of the Princeton Class of 1980, in the course of living their lives, experienced first-hand the onset of a new degree of global living, working, and interdependency – much of it fueled by the Internet and digital technology. Trend-spotters called it “globalization,” but we were just following our careers, our instincts, and our hearts… and lived it.
We now invite all at Reunions to join us, as our classmates share stories of living and working abroad, in both private roles and “in the service of all Nations,” and share what opportunities they think lie ahead.
Panelists will include:
Anne‐Marie Slaughter ‘80, President and CEO, New America.
Robert Silverman ‘80, President and Chairman of the Board of Governors of the American Foreign Service Association.
Jeffrey H. Levenson ‘80, Founder and President, Levenson Eye Associates; Lead physician, Surgical Eye Expeditions, International.
Sharon Keld ‘80, Returned Peace Corps Volunteer; Board Member, National Peace Corps Association.
Stephen Hughes ‘80, Owner and General Manager, Onda Positiva, S.L., Madrid, Spain.
Marc Fisher ‘80, Senior Editor, former Central Europe Bureau Chief, The Washington Post.
Tibor Baranski, Jr. ’80, Counsel, Jun He Law Offices, Beijing, China; Member, Board of Trustees, Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry – China.