Does the compliance officer own corporate character?
Friday, May 9, 2014 at 7:28AM
Aarti Maharaj in Ethics Communications Best Practices, Ethisphere, Mitchell Mackler, Paul Gennaro

Trust in business has plummeted to a historic low, according to a recent study by Ethisphere Institute, and the composite score of trust across many industries is a cause for concern.

The  2014 Ethics Communications Best Practices Report provides a snapshot into some of the key trends in business ethics and features insights and perspectives from industry leaders, academics, and corporate governance and legal professionals.   

"If we talk about what we are doing well, then we are not being transparent,” says Mitchell Mackler, geographic head of legal, Americas, at Wipro, a multinational information technology consulting and system integration company.

"There are bound to be bumps in any organization, and I believe that by being open, honest and transparent, we hold ourselves accountable to the public at large, our shareholders, nongovernmental organizations, etc., and in turn, continue to build a stronger company."

While transparency remains a hot button issue among members of the C-suite, the report suggests that an emphasis on ethics in communications can drive greater profitability and mitigate risks.  

"A focus on ethics within internal and external communications is the right thing to do, it is also critical to the life of your organization," said Paul Gennaro, senior vice president and chief communications officer at AECOM.

He added that the current state of trust in organizations presents an opportunity for the entire C-suite -- ncluding communications, compliance, governance and legal professionals -- to rebuild public confidence. 

The report notes some emerging trends in corporate ethics that leaders should keep in mind when communicating an authentic message:

The 2014 Ethics Communications Best Practices Report is available here


Aarti Maharaj is a Senior Writer in AECOM's Corporate Communications Department and a freelance reporter on corporate governance, compliance and ethics.

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