When I was a newbie to the corporate compliance industry, I sometimes struggled to understand exactly what compliance meant and what it looked like. The language of compliance is often so riddled with legalese that my eyes tend to glaze over when reading it. For example, “Instead of the theretofore almost universally used amortized cost method that permitted MMFs to maintain a stable $1.00 NAV.” Here’s the link if you really want your eyes to glaze over.
See what I mean? Word soup. I have managed to learn by plowing through the jargon and learning what it means, but the process isn’t always easy (or fun).
Then I ran across this in a blog by Richard Bistrong
If compliance is not a part of (your) business discussion, including setting strategy, goals and incentives, especially in high-risk (low integrity) regions, then the compliance team may be left with the unenviable task of ‘catching falling knives.’
What Good Compliance Looks Like: Part II
And I understood immediately.
What caught my attention was the metaphor “catching falling knives.” In a past life, I went to culinary school and became a chef. One of the first and most important lessons I learned in the kitchen was: if a knife is falling DO NOT try to catch it. That vivid image was enough to put corporate compliance in a context I could make sense of.
Who else could I discover?
Once I discovered Bistrong and his clear writing, I hunted up others and found Roy Snell with his wry humor about the corporate compliance industry.
It appears that the next 12 months of corruption discoveries will make the previous 50 years look like…Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.
and Tom Fox with his music and literary references
While (King) Lear’s Fool was actually a font of wisdom and commentary, the same cannot always be said for the corporate fools who put evidence of bribery and corruption in emails, excel spreadsheets and PowerPoint slide deck presentations.
Shakespeare Week – Part V: Lear’s Fool and Power Points
and Broadcat’s simply designed training materials
Next came the podcasts
So many podcasts from Roy Snell and Tom Fox’s Unfair & Unbalanced to Kortney Nordrum’s Compliance Perspectives. These podcasts are by turns funny, and engaging, and when you’re done enjoying them, you’ve actually learned something. A great source to learn who these corporate compliance masters are is Leona Lewis’s Masters of Disaster podcast.
I am still learning about the corporate compliance industry but thanks to these heavy hitters and their clear thinking and writing I am making great headway. I also realized I have a Compliance Crush on these people who can make someone like me, without a compliance background, engaged and interested in what they are saying.
These are some of the people on the Compliance Crush (#ComplianceCrush) list I’m building as I go. If you’re a corporate compliance or HR professional you can learn new tools for training and engaging your workforce by following the folks on my list. And compliantly enjoy yourself.