Call for Better Tone at Top of Audit Firms


The top accountant at the Securities and Exchange Commission just fired a warning shot at the accounting industry, urging audit firms to do better at holding firm personnel accountable for misconduct and at developing a strong tone at the top overall.  Said warning shot came from Paul Munter, chief accountant at the SEC, who released…

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Demonstrating Values Amid Difficulty


Ethics and compliance professionals often talk about the importance of tone at the top, and we have no shortage of examples of CEOs setting a poor tone. Today we can pivot toward the better, with an example of strong, empathetic tone at the top from AirBnB.  On Tuesday AirBnB announced that it would lay off…

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Great Example of CEO Setting the Tone


Compliance professionals talk all the time about the importance of “tone at the top,” that accurate but overused phrase that means CEOs should demonstrate the importance of disciplined, principled performance to their workforce.  Tone at the top has always struck me as one of those things where you know it when you see it —…

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AT&T Wins Ethics Award, Looks Ridiculous


Well this is awkward: AT&T won an award for corporate ethics earlier this week — just hours before news broke that the company paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to President Trump’s personal lawyer last year in what looks like a bribe to help curry favor with the Trump Administration. The award came on May…

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Tone at Top Gone Wrong: The Christie Example

Nothing says “America!” these days like righteous indignation at a fellow American doing something we don’t like. So as we return from our Fourth of July holiday, let’s all give thanks to one American who cultivates that spirit and gives chief compliance officers a great example to cite next time you’re talking with the CEO…

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