On a more macro level, companies can
try to work with the commercial sector of
the home country’s embassy or consulate to
encourage transparency. In some cases a local
chamber of commerce can have influence.
However, in the end, if winning business in
a particular area is not possible to do in an
ethical or transparent manner, then you have
to take the decision to exit the region or sector.
Companies cannot afford to waste time and
resources if they cannot sell their services
on merit with
and are exposing
significant legal and
In some cases
it may be wise
to stay close and
wait for change
into a particular
section. I think
India is a very good
example of where
significant efforts are being made to make the
environment more transparent.
DT: Having worked over a long period in
the Middle East, have you seen the attitude
toward compliance and ethics change at all?
TT: Absolutely; the global anticorruption
climate is changing. There is a much greater
focus on anticorruption globally, and
enforcement of violations is increasing.
At the same time, companies have become
much less likely to look the other way when
there are ethical violations. A recent example
is an instance in Abu Dubai at a large firm.
An employee who was very well-respected
in the company and the industry engaged in
a significant ethical violation. The company
took decisive and appropriate action and
terminated him. And what is really positive
is that no one else in the industry has taken
him on, given his prior conduct. I think years
ago that the allegations would have been
brushed aside and not looked into; perhaps the
whistleblower, particularly in that part of the
world, would have been fired or ostracized or
brushed aside. And that’s just one example of
DT: This year you
attended the ECEI in
Frankfurt and again
presented with Eric
Feldman from AMI.
Did you retain your
rock star status?
TT: Maybe not to
the same extent, but
certainly more than
I’m accustomed to!
All joking aside, I am
to be a member of
SCCE, and I feel
to encourage other executives to join and
contribute. I have gained a tremendous
amount of knowledge since joining and
expanding my professional network.
DT: Can we expect to see you at the
TT: Absolutely; you’re stuck with me
now! I feel strongly that I gain much from
my participation, and I think my experience
provides a valuable perspective to discussions.
DT: We all look forward to seeing you
there! Thank you very much for sharing
your insights with us and for providing
the compliance community with a shining
example of true leadership. ✵
There is a much greater
focus on anticorruption
globally, and enforcement
of violations is increasing.