As the chairman-elect of The American College of Healthcare Executives, I get an opportunity to mix with the speakers who present to the organization.
Lynn talked about some interesting dynamics in the country which will generally focus around December 21, 2010. That is when a great deal of corporate debt in the country comes due, and executives will be under a great deal of pressure leading up to that point.
She said that this was similar to the situation in which she found herself in Enron. After working there for just six months she found some information which could have been interpreted as bank fraud. When she addressed this issue she was told to ignore the data and not speak of it again.
Compounding her issue was the fact that she had stock options making her thousands and thousands of dollars a day. It’s this kind of pressure and incentive that lead good people in organizations to do the wrong thing. Fortunately, she did the right thing and now is the CEO of The Integrity Institute, helping others deal with such issues.
In a typical company, about 2 to 6 percent of employees will come forward with concerns about what is going on, Lynn said. In a company where the number is less than that, people are generally being told to not report and the organization runs the risk of violating law and frustrating employees. Where the rate is higher than that, employees may be wiling to talk, but there would appear to be more causing concerns than there otherwise should be.