The Empowerment of the CCO: Old Ways Die Hard

Michael Volkov – Corruption, Crime & Compliance – April 6, 2015

“Why not go out on a limb? That’s where the fruit is.”  — Will Rogers

” Change is the law of life and those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”  — John F. Kennedy

The compliance profession continues to evolve and grow.  More lawyers and law students are seeking knowledge and training in the field of ethics and compliance.  There is a reason for that.

Donna Boehme, a leader in the ethics and compliance field recently wrote an important column on Compliance 2.0, and the death of Compliance 1.0. (Here and Here). Michael Scher, another compliance leader, has several important postings on this issue on the FCPA Blog (Here and Here).

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Read this article at Corruption, Crime & Compliance.

Defining Compliance 2.0: Key Compliance Partners (Part 5 of 5)

Michael Volkov – Corruption, Crime & Compliance – December 4, 2015

I always use the “Streetcar Named Desire” line to describe the challenges a  Chief Compliance Officer faces – CCOs depend on the kindness of strangers.  It is a little bit of an exaggeration but bear with me. CCOs are not superheroes and cannot by themselves ensure an effective ethics and compliance program.

An effective compliance program depends on a positive working relationship among the key compliance functions in a company. CCOs have to work closely with the General Counsel, the Internal Auditor, Human Resources, CFO and Comptroller, Information Technology, Security, Procurement, Senior Leadership Team, and of course, the CEO.

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Read this article on Corruption, Crime & Compliance.

Defining Compliance 2.0: Senior Leadership (Part 4 of 5)

Michael Volkov – Corruption, Crime & Compliance – December 3, 2015

Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.~ Vince Lombardi

Like so many areas in life, a successful ethics and compliance program depends on teamwork. My last two postings, Parts 4 and 5, will highlight these essential partners – senior leadership and key compliance functions.

In a company culture, teamwork is vital. There is always room for individual accomplishments and rewards but when it comes to ethics and compliance, teamwork is an essential piece. A compliance program depends on joint acceptance, activity and commitment – most importantly by business leaders in the company.

I have seen too many companies that focus primarily on the performance of the board, the CEO and the CCO, and ignore the valuable contributions that senior executives can make to an ethics and compliance program.

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Read this article on Corruption, Crime & Compliance.

Defining Compliance 2.0: The CCO (Part 3 of 5)

Michael Volkov – Corruption, Crime & Compliance – December 2, 2015

These are heady days for Chief Compliance Officers. Over the last 20 years, the CCO has moved from the backwater of corporate offices to the front and center of the power structure.

We now have debates over the independence of the CCO from the legal function, the reporting obligations and the relationship between the CCO and the board.

There is no question that CCOs have gained in the corporate structure. But CCOs have to be careful on two important fronts – they cannot overpromise on results, and they have to deliver in tangible ways on the business side of the equation. If CCOs mess up big time, or if they fail to communicate realistic expectations, CCOs will quickly suffer the budget ax and retribution from the board and CEOs in response to any major legal violation or reputational issue.

Read this article on Corruption, Crime & Compliance.

Social Media Week Part VI – Social Media and CCO 3.0

Thomas Fox – The FCPA Compliance Report – August 10, 2015

I conclude this exploration of the uses of social media in doing compliance by exploring why the compliance function is uniquely suited to using social media tools. Long gone are the days when Chief Compliance Officers (CCO) or compliance practitioners were lawyers housed in the Legal Department or the General Counsel’s (GC’s) office writing policies and procedures and then putting on eight hour training programs on same. Donna Boehme has written passionately about CCO 2.0 and the structural change to separate the CCO role from that of the GC because of the differences in focus of a CCO and GC. Simply put, a GC and legal department is there to protect the company while the CCO and compliance function exists to solve problems before the company needs protections from them.

Freed of the constraints to write policies and procedures by lawyers for lawyers, the profession has moved to integrating compliance directly into the fabric of the company. I often say that a Foreign Corrupt Practices (FCPA) compliance program is a business solution to a legal problem. The problem is how to comply with the FCPA and other anti-corruption regimes. The solution is to burn compliance into the DNA of your company so that it is not only owned by the business unit but also acted on by the business unit in its day-to-day operations.

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Read this article on the FCPA Compliance Report.