Board Oversight: Fostering an Ethically Competitive Company – Part 3

Episode Summary

This is Part 3 in our series on Fostering an Ethically Competitive Company:

  • Part 1: Patricia Harned shares trends uncovered by their long-running survey, The State of Ethics & Compliance in the Workplace. Click here to watch.
  • Part 2: Larry Thompson explains what boards must keep in mind as they structure oversight around corporate culture. Click here to watch.
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    While the relationship between strong core values and company performance is difficult to demonstrate empirically, we can point to a few organizations who’ve gotten it right and prospered for it. We’ve also seen companies with little to no emphasis on core values proceed down a less desirable path.

    In the final episode of our three-part series, Larry Thompson, Chairman of the Ethics & Compliance Initiative and board member with The Southern Company & Graham Holdings Co., returns to emphasize the critical nature of core values–and the board’s role in creating a culture of integrity.

    “The board, the executives, middle management… everyone in the company must be joined at the hip as to what the company stands for,” said Thompson. “What are the core values that we’re going to use as we move forward?”

    While establishing core values may seem simple, host TK Kerstetter and Thompson discuss the difficulty of implementing core values throughout an organization. Thompson also shares a real-life example from his time serving as general counsel at PepsiCo.

    Ethics and compliance and integrity should be the responsibility of every single employee. I like to say, if you have a company of 100,000 people, you will have 100,000 chief compliance officers.
    — Larry Thompson, Board Member, The Southern Company & Graham Holdings Co.