Well, it happened: the Society of Corporate Compliance & Ethics has hosted its first in-person conference in two years, with more than 600 people schmoozing, learning, and awkwardly leaning in for hugs at the Aria Hotel in Las Vegas.
Hundreds more compliance professionals watched the SCCE conference virtually from the comfort of their own homes, and of course they count as part of the compliance community too. Still, the energy and enthusiasm of the in-person crowd was great, even from behind a mask.
I’ll have some follow-up posts in days to come about specific sessions I attended, since they created lots of food for thought. Meanwhile, following are some dispatches from social media to give you a flavor of what’s been happening here.
The conference opened with a session titled “Canceling the Compliance Culture” (a nifty turn of phrase), about how to reinvent compliance as a business function more engaged with the modern workforce and the challenges it faces.
— Adam Turteltaub (@AdamTurteltaub) September 20, 2021
And this is a glimpse of what the conference looked like for compliance professionals watching from home.
— Gwendolyn L. Hassan (@GwenHassan) September 20, 2021
One session on compliance officers serving on corporate boards, which is a great idea we have discussed on Radical Compliance many times before.
Happening now – @LRN’s @DavidIGreenberg moderating a fascinating conversation with #boardmembers Diana Sands and Cindy Moehring about the growing need for former #ethics and #compliance officers to sit on #corporateboards. @SCCE #SCCEcei pic.twitter.com/WuBfEhLiGc
— Ty Francis MBE (@tyfrancis) September 20, 2021
An excellent point here about corporate culture and internal reporting.
EB1: Is compliance at your organization viewed as a transaction where employees calculate the cost benefit analysis to them personally? #SCCEcei
— Walter E. Johnson (@walter_johnson1) September 21, 2021
Day 2 opened with a keynote presentation from violinist Kai Kight, talking about creativity and inspiration. Which we sorely need for FCPA training that sticks in employees’ minds.
Excellent Keynote speaker @KaiKight at #SCCEcei! Diversity is like an orchestra playing in harmony…different instruments, tones, textures, & melodies come together to create a greater voice. Each person has a responsibility. #compliance #ethics #DEI #ESG @SCCE pic.twitter.com/BstSwkhcpX
— Kristin Roberts, JD, CCEP (@robertskat08) September 21, 2021
The importance of documentation, people. We’ve talked about this.
Solid presentation on How to Defend Your Compliance Program in a Gov’t Investigation – “You are reverse engineering [your work for the prosecutor’s office]. Your arguments don’t mean anything unless you can back them up with some proof…” – #SCCEcei
— Holly Weick (@HollyWeick) September 20, 2021
The competition for these awards must be fierce.
Attending the #SCCEcei this morning and watching the lovely Mary Shirley and her panel talking about “Gold Medal” performances (dripping with sarcasm) in #compliance this past year including the Activision Blizzard and Nissan cases. pic.twitter.com/5H0GKvSxJ9
— Gwendolyn L. Hassan (@GwenHassan) September 22, 2021
An excellent session on artificial intelligence, moderated by yours truly.
Great session on the use of Artificial Intelligence in corporate compliance at the #SCCEcei this afternoon. Fascinating use cases and discussion of opportunities. #compliance #ArtificialInelligence pic.twitter.com/BDIIOZbtlu
— Gwendolyn L. Hassan (@GwenHassan) September 21, 2021
Finally, a word about attending an in-person conference these days generally. This was my first big event post-pandemic. I was a bit apprehensive, and wondered how weird it would be to socialize as much as possible while wearing a mask. Both of those uncertainties vanished pretty much as soon as I arrived on scene, and I’m enormously glad I attended. I will absolutely attend more in-person conferences as they come along.
Also, SCCE implemented a wristband system to let attendees know how comfortable everyone was with physical distance. Green bands meant you’d be happy to do hugs, high fives, and whatnot; yellow bands meant talking but no physical contant; red bands meant stay away.
This was the pile of wristbands at the end of the conference. It speaks volumes about just how happy everyone was to be together again.
— Matt Kelly (@compliancememe) September 22, 2021