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Donna Boehme: Three CCO Resolutions for a Strategic 2017

While still within shouting distance of January 1, I’d like to set out my top 2017 resolutions for CCOs and EthiTweeps.

I’ve kept them deliberately brief and broad so that every reader can achieve something important in each category — with a view to achieving successful milestones in the Compliance 2.0 world of 2017.

Resolution #1 – Brush Up Your Plan. There are two kinds of CCOs: (1) the “deer-in-the-headlights” CCO and (2) the confident, well-prepared CCO with a Plan. Which are you? A solid CCO Plan need not be a Microsoft Project Masterpiece. It can be as simple as a one page graphic with clear workstreams, subtasks, and timetable calibrated to the current stage of your compliance program. 

The important and critical work is the strategic thinking that goes into your plan development, which should enable you and your team to develop the overall umbrella vision to guide you on the best use of your time and resources. Strategy. It matters. After all, you don’t want to spend the next 2 years on the Spinning Teacups ride, when you really should be in line in Tomorrowland, right?

Resolution #2 – Build Your Subject Matter Expertise. (SME). The foundational element of a successful Compliance 2.0 program is the SME of its leaders, starting with the CCO and compliance team, who are the means of bringing any and all compliance SME into the organization. And here it might be helpful to provide you with some recommended study habits-based on my own experience and those of my inner thought circle:

Good CCO Study Habits.

Every day, spend some time after the close of business analyzing lessons learned and how any new information might be used to inform or modify your Plan. This is much more productive than falling into bed, exhausted at the end of the day (although this is how I developed my habit of analyzing overnight, which is what led me to CCO Rule #2A)

Every day, do something important to expand your compliance SME and broaden your vision (read, participate in one of your compliance networks, catch up with your mentor, or spend time building the ship while sailing).

Resolution #3 – Do something meaningful to support the profession. Attend a respected compliance conference with key members of your team (this one satisfies Resolution #2 as well) to deliver knowledge or lessons learned to your colleagues. More points on your CCO scoreboard if you can plan ahead to leverage the conference experience to build the SME of your team.

And A Big Shout Out to the Joe Murphy Rule!


Donna Boehme is the Principal of Compliance Strategists LLC. She has advised a wide spectrum of private, public, governmental, academic and non-profit entities on organizational compliance and ethics. @DonnaCBoehme

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