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Part 1 Ethics versus compliance

Before beginning your discussion, read the article Ethics vs. compliance: Do we really need to talk about both? (Links to an external site.) Organizations often use the terms ethics and compliance interchangeably. However, there are some nuances that are different between compliance and ethics. After reading the article, compare and contrast the similarities and differences between compliance and ethics. Evaluate whether a compliance officer or an ethics officer would be a better fit in your current organization (or in an organization with which you are familiar).

Part 2 Ethics, Compliance, and Training

Read chapter four in the textbook and Ethics, reputation, and compliance gain as corporate priorities (Links to an external site.). In the article, Hagel (2015) stated

The demand for greater transparency from consumers and stakeholders across the world has pushed the areas of ethics and compliance up the corporate list of priorities in recent years. In addition, the risk to reputation and potential damage that can be done if evidence of unethical practice is discovered have increased significantly with the advent of social media. (para. 2)

Based on the importance of transparency, your organization (you can represent any organization, McDonalds, Starbucks, ESPN, etc.) has asked you to create a training presentation on ethics and compliance to be presented next week. Referencing the Hagel article, the Gonzales-Padron textbook, and at least two other journal articles, present an outline for your training as a response to this thread.

· Create an outline describing the information that you would include in your training presentation.

· Must document all sources in APA style as outlined in the University of Arizona Global Campus Writing Center.

By Ashley Watson

Ethics vs. compliance: Do we realiy
need to taik about botii?





n the ethics and com-
pliance profession,
some companies use
the title, “Chief Ethics
and Compliance Of-

ficer,” others use “Chief Ethics
Officer” while others choose
“Chief Compliance Oflicer.”
The terms “ethics” and “com-
pliance” are often used sjoion-
yinously; as a result, drawing
a distinction between the two
concepts may seem unimport-
ant. In fact, the difference
between the two can be very
important for your training,
communications and overall
culture. Indeed, the conscious
choices that companies make
about these concepts often define
their business.

Ethics and compliance are es-
sentially difl^ erent sides of the same
coin. Compliance is following the
law, while ethics is doing what is
right regardless of what the law
says. Compliance is something that
the government requires you to do.
Ethics, on the other hand, is some-
thing you choose to consider when
taking action. As an example, vari-
ous countries have environmental
laws that require products to be
labeled in a certain way and may
include font requirements, place-
ment rules, etc. Eailing to properly
label a product or follow some other
technical regulation is not unethical
or immoral, but it is noncompliant,
meaning that the company may face
fines, liability or other government
action. By contrast, a government
may not dictate whether a company
makes its products more environ-
mentally safe or easier to recycle,
but doing so may be the ethical
thing to do.

If your policies and training
place great emphasis on high-level
values of right and wrong, you may
not be properly pushing a culture
of compliance. Of course, too much
focus on legal standards without
strong ethics messaging may inhibit
the kind of values-based culture
that makes employees proud and
companies great. It is important to
think about and convey the impor-
tance of both ethical considerations
and compliance.

The distinction between ethics
and compliance becomes even more
interesting when you are dealing
with a compliance issue that has an
ethical component. The most obvi-
ous example is corruption. Besides
being prohibited by the Foreign
Corrupt Practices Act(ECPA), U.K.
Anti-Bribery Act and scores of other
local laws (and thus a compliance
issue), most people would agree
that corruption is wrong and has
an ethical component. But even
with a seemingly obvious ethics is-

policies and
place great
on high-
level values
of right and
wrong, you
may not be
pushing a
culture of

sue, using a “do the right thing”
message to drive your anti-cor-
ruption program may not be
the right move in every circum-

Eor example, you likely have
a policy that prohibits employ-
ees ft’om giving cash, lavish
gifts or favors to public sector
employees. The policy is part
of your anti-corruption pro-
gram, and messages about right
and vwong, values and moral-
ity, should be the most effective
way to motivate employees to
follow the policy. After all, ev-
eryone knows bribery is wrong.
But actually, such a message
may lack credibility with many

of your employees who live in cul-
tures where lavish gifts are expected
or cash gifts on certain occasions
are appropriate. It may actually
feel wrong to them to refrain ftom
giving an expensive gift as part of
a business relationship. Similarly,
employees sometimes rationalize
their actions as right because they
believe the ends justify the means.
Isn’t it better to give a lavish gift
and help the company get business
than to let the work go to a competi-
tor? What is really “right” here? For
these employees, the more eflective
message may be about compliance
with the FCPA and similar laws,
emphasizing the potential liability,
brand impact and business risks of

The best programs will recog-
nize the difference between ethics
and compliance and drive both as
integral components of company
culture and successful performance.
In the end, companies that follow
the law and prioritize ethics have a
competitive advantage.

February 2014 • INSIDE COUNSEL 23

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