Cindy Morrison on Trust and Speak-Up Cultures [Podcast]

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By Adam Turteltaub

Getting employees to come forward and raise issue can be difficult. There is often genuine fear of retaliation, and many don’t trust that the company will do anything. It’s a topic that Cindy Morrison CCEP (LinkedIn), Director, Global Ethics and Compliance, Post Holdings, Inc. will be addressing at the 2022 SCCE Compliance & Ethics Institute and tackles in the latest Compliance Perspectives podcast.

Her own journey of discovery in this area was jolted by an assessment revealing that employees did not think the company had a speak-up culture. The key to creating one, she realized, is encouraging respectful dialogue. A true, two-way discussion is necessary to help build the trust that is so essential. Employees want to be heard, and if the company isn’t listening to them, they are never going to feel safe.

Showing that the organization is listening begins with making the effort to know the employees, a difficult challenge in this remote-working world where employees tend to change jobs frequently. Still, it must be done and managers need to practice active listening and adapting communications style to the listener.

It also means demonstrating that when employees speak up, actions are taken: bad actors get disciplined or fired, policies are changed or publicly reinforced.

In addition, it is essential to remember that each facility may have its own distinct culture. That may stem from the history of the facility and who has worked there, or the ethnic makeup of the employees. It’s also important to remember that not all facilities in the same country will share a common culture. As she notes, their operation in Minnesota is 70% Somali.

Finally, she underscores the importance of constant education. Make sure the workforce knows all the ways it can raise issues and what to do if they feel they are being retaliated against.

Listen in to learn more, and then join us at the 2022 SCCE Compliance & Ethics Institute.