I have devoted my governance tips this summer to talking about compliance. I have designed an acronym to help us achieve the goals that have been set by our organizations. The acronym is COMPLY. I have already talked about:
C= communicate the policies,
O= observe behaviour to determine compliance.
M= measure the compliance.
P= prevent misbehaviour or provide penalties for bad behaviour.
This week I am talking about L.
L= leadership – tone at the top.
How many times have we heard that the bosses don’t follow the rules so why should anyone else? If parents don’t model the correct behavior, then the children will be rule breakers as well.
When I am auditing an organization, one of the items I am required to document is management and board integrity. The old saying “Do as I say, not as I do” does not work. The leaders of the organization must show that the policies apply to them as well and that they are committed to following them.
If you have leadership adhering to the policies, then you have a much better chance of getting the rest of the stakeholders on board.