Most of Compliance consultant companies and internal departments use the compass as their logo. Why is this so? Maybe it represents the service to the employees to make it through the jungle of internal guidelines, local and global laws? If this is it, maybe it should update to a more modern GPS system? Compliance is not only a department, which you consult before the trip and it tells you in which direction to go, but Compliance 4.0 is travelling together with the employee.
To offer value for the business, Compliance cannot limit itself to approve or not approve, but if something is not possible, it has to be analyzed, if the same result can be reached via a different route. Most employees do not want to do something forbidden, but maybe not had been aware of the risks and specific regulations. Here the Compliance tasks are to adapt the related action, so that it complies with all laws and regulations. A good example is the mixture between GPS and social network: “Waze”. This App, available for Android and iPhone, tells the user the quickest way from point A to B, this is not always the shortest way, but also traffic and even police controls, construction sites or accidents play a role. Just as the app, the Compliance Officer guides the way through the unknown territory and keeping the employee on the legal paths; changing legal realities on the radar.
But maybe the compass has another, surprising origin: Vincent van Gogh. The world-famous Dutch painter wrote once to his brother Theo: “Conscience is a man’s compass, and though the needle sometimes deviates, though one often perceives irregularities in directing one’s course by it, still one must try to follow its direction.”
Conscience gives us direction, the ability to distinguish between right and wrong. Compliance is the company’s conscience. The goal is to have company and employees going into the same direction. Hereby can Compliance use its workshops not only to present controls and laws, but further to create awareness and conscience for sustainability and cost of corruption.
- Henz, Patrick (2016): “Compliance is a Race Car.”
- Irving Stone, Jean Stone (1995): “Dear Theo: The Autobiography of Vincent Van Gogh”