Corporate ComplianceOriginally published at Corporate Compliance Insights on November 19, 2018 by Guest Columnist Donna Boehme.  

Donna Boehme, the “Lion of Compliance,” comments on Novartis as a new “rock star” on the corporate compliance landscape, observing that the company has elevated its approach to compliance, culture and trust to best practice “Compliance 2.0” status – first, with its 2014 appointment of an independent and empowered CECO with true compliance SME (earned in the field) and now, with the elevation of the role to include all management risk functions and with a seat on the executive management team. She also notes as best practice the company’s establishment of a new bonus system that links bonuses to ethical leadership behavior, a feature many leading companies have yet to achieve.
Continue Reading Pharma Giant Graduates to Compliance 2.0

Originally published at Corporate Compliance Insights on June 3, 2014 by Guest Columnist Donna Boehme.  

Recently I’ve had a few epiphanies about corporate whistleblowers (are we ever going to find a better term for this?), and the most striking is this:

Many are accidental.

My month of whistleblower observations includes (i) a striking column by a former JPMorgan executive, “5 Terrible Things I Learned as a Corporate Whistleblower”1, (ii) a visit in the North York Moors to the home of the former head of risk for the UK’s HBOS bank and (iii) a fascinating keynote session with the former CEO of Japan’s Olympus Corporation at the recent Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics (SCCE) European conference in London.
Continue Reading 3 Accidental Whistleblowers (Fired for Doing their Jobs Well)

Originally published at Corporate Counsel on March 17, 2015.

The bulk of 2014 was a milestone year for the compliance and ethics field, marking the demise of the failed “Compliance 1.0” model (compliance as a captive arm of the legal function) and the rise of “Compliance 2.0” (compliance freed from the legal department and positioned for success). Some big developments—such as the now standard separation of compliance from legal in the health care industry, and similar momentum in big banks after a series of record-breaking settlements involving LIBOR rate fixing, mortgage fraud and money laundering—have led to some (now prophetic) media headlines including “Legal Losing Its Grip Over Risk and Compliance,” “Ethics and Compliance Moving Out of the Law Department” and “Report: More Companies Splitting Legal and Compliance.” Several industry surveys have mirrored this momentum.

A careful observer will have noted three key events from 2014 that can be categorized as “nails in the coffin” for the decades-old, fatally flawed Compliance 1.0 model:
Continue Reading 3 Nails in the Coffin of ‘Compliance 1.0′

Originally published at Corporate Counsel on October 16, 2014.

What would it look like if the human resources team woke up one day and suddenly decided it was going to take over the job of the internal audit function? Would managers somehow be asked to incorporate audit activities into their performance reviews? Would audit become 90 percent training? And more importantly, would the organization find itself less capable of identifying and fixing control risks?

NO, you say! That could never happen! Because everyone knows Internal Audit has a certain highly developed subject matter expertise, and that’s why this must be left to the experts.

And you would be right, of course. Which is why so many compliance and ethics authorities are uncomfortable with the prospect of the legal department or the general counsel driving compliance. To paraphrase Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa—You don’t have to be a former chief compliance officer and recovered lawyer to see/smell the General Motors-style folly of that arrangement.

Continue Reading GM’s DIY Compliance: #WhatCouldPossiblyGoWrong?

As companies head into 2013 facing yet another year of increasing and complex compliance and ethics challenges, here’s a threshold question for the Board of Directors: Does your chief compliance officer have the empowerment, independence, seat at the table, line of sight, and resources to do the job?

Following is a “boardworthy” sample of big developments from 2012 that should give some boards and C-suites (and you know who you are) pause:
Continue Reading 2012’s 10 Big Moments for Chief Compliance Officers

In Washington, there’s an old cliché: The definition of a gaffe is when a politician accidentally tells the truth. So this recent internal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) video gone viral, one of several internal “changecasts” from Acting ATF director B. Todd Jones, has got to qualify him for induction into the Gaffe Hall of Fame.
Continue Reading ATF’s Orwellian Warning to Whistleblowers