Compliance » Challenges for Compliance Professionals in an Era of Distrust and Discontent

Challenges for Compliance Professionals in an Era of Distrust and Discontent

Challenges for Compliance Professionals in an Era of Distrust and Discontent

January 16, 2024

A growing sense of discontent and distrust continues to permeate the compliance community, extending beyond traditional concerns such as return-to-office mandates and budget cuts, according to an article from the FCPA Blog. Author Harry Cassin says the crux of the issue lies in a profound lack of trust in governments. Only 16% of Americans trusted the government in 2023, with President Biden’s approval rating hitting a historic low of 39%, reflective of a global trend where leaders like British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz also face dwindling support.

This pervasive distrust poses a significant challenge for compliance professionals. The foundation of compliance relies on a standard, whether public law or private policy. However, if individuals lack trust in those implementing the standard or the standard itself, non-compliance flourishes. The situation becomes complex when distinguishing between compliance with good policies, non-compliance with bad policies, compliance with bad policies, and non-compliance with good policies.

The diminishing trust in institutions extends to the Department of Justice (DOJ), which reports an “unprecedented rise” in threats against the agency. With only 17% of Americans expressing a “great deal” of confidence in the DOJ, the erosion of trust correlates with a decline in compliance with laws prohibiting threats against public servants.

For compliance professionals, navigating this landscape requires a multifaceted approach. The evolving dynamics demand a blend of legal expertise, philosophical understanding, advocacy for freedom, and a role as a peacemaker. As the compliance community braces for a tumultuous future, the call for wisdom becomes paramount in fostering trust and steering organizations through an era marked by skepticism and uncertainty.

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