At 37signals, a company with just eight employees whose Web-based collaboration software is used by thousands of small businesses, there isn’t time to sit around a conference room sipping latte and deconstructing memos. Come to think of it, there isn’t even a company conference room. There are just a couple of cubicles, loads of brainpower and three simple goals: make useful business software, make it easy to run, make money selling it. Repeat.
In a new examination of 374 companies accused of securities fraud between 1997 and 2002, an average of seven people were implicated in each case… CEOs were implicated in nearly 90% of the cases examined. Next came CFOs, 78%. Then board directors, 40%; vice presidents, 36%; COOs, 20%; controllers, 19%; and general counsels, 7%. Big accounting firms were implicated in 18% of the cases.
When a consultancy offers solutions, it has made its bed with a handful of technology or other vendors that will provide some portion of the service/product combination that will be sold to clients. When a consultant is truly independent and objective, they are solution independent and will help clients select the best solution for the client (not for the integrator).
Between departments and across the enterprise, more parties have gotten involved in assessing risk and contributing to the company’s risk management process. That has led to some confusion and overlapping of responsibilities. One-third of the internal audit managers surveyed said their companies conduct multiple risk assessments across the organization, but the majority do not coordinate their work or results. The effect is inefficient and redundant presentations before audit committees.
In a 2004 survey of 1,000 women golfers, 73% said that the game had helped them develop important business relationships, and over half said that being able to talk knowledgeably about golf had contributed to their success.