Shankar , our GC brought this book to my attention.
This is a book written by a former GE GC. Many people believe that high performance and high integrity cannot co- exist. The author Ben Heineman systematically shows us how it should be done laying great emphasis on the CEO and those who lead teams.
This great company trusts each and every one of us to do the right thing, every moment, every day. I have enormous faith that you will build a high integrity –hi performance culture, both are important.
High Performance with High
Ben Heineman Jr
Contemporary companies must
fuse high performance with high
Hi performance means
Strong sustained economic growth
Superior products and services
Durable benefits to shareholders
Hi Integrity means
Tenacious adherence on the part of
the orgn to rules and procedures, in
spirit and letter
Voluntary adoption of global
Employee commitment to the core
I urge the CEOs to move beyond
the ‘tone at the top 'platitudes to
drive a robust high integrity and
high performance culture by
reaching out deep into the
If we want hi performance with
high integrity, we should actually
focus on how the CEO actually
governs the company.
The CEO and his team need to
literally take thousands of actions
with integrity implications every
We will not repeal human nature ,
but we must reduce improprieties
to a minimum. It is a quest taken
in good faith, engaging most of
the people most of the time, in a
Personal incentives driven by
‘making the numbers’ create
Employees may feel that their
bonuses etc. and even job security
depends on those numbers.
I believe that the CEOs core task is
to channel the financial pressures
by building systems, processes
and articulating principles for
Corporate governance has three
a. The relationship betn shareholders
and the company,b.The relationship
between the directors and the top
leaders and c. The relationship
between leaders and the employees.
Any business leader who has been
through an intense government
investigation, can testify to its
huge and negative impact.
As a result, business leaders must
work much harder and more
effectively in a hostile, less
High Integrity from leaders gets
many benefits :
It attracts good talent, it
empowers employees to speak up,
it contributes to meritocratic
alignment between personal and
If you create the right systems and
procedures, you create the right
A company must have a robust set
of practices to:
track business disciplines
have real consequences
use needed resources
Leaders must embody values.
Companies are exquisitely attuned
to hypocrisy on the part of their
For a CEO, every employee event
is a ‘public’meeting that demands
the best personal behavior that is
consistent with company values.
Senior executives must both be
managers and leaders.
The hardest act for a hi
performance hi integrity culture is
the ability for business leaders to
invest time and effort needed to
embed integrity principles and
practices into key business
Once detections of violations are
seen, a good company responds
effectively and quickly.
Responding to violations has four
Remediation within the business
Remediation across the company
The impropriety such as cheating
on an expense statement, simply
grows out of a personal weakness
and this poor behavior is borne
out by poor risk mitigation.
The CEO must encourage the CFO
and the GC to be strong voices at
the table on such issues. The CFO
and the GC must represent the
corporation’s interests and not the
All employees must commit to:
Formal and ethical obligations
Do things right by following the
Live the values of candor, honesty,
During my time at GE, whenever I
was asked what I lose sleep over -
it was emerging markets.
The temptation to bend rules to
suit local requirement sis great
and is the first step for a series of
mishaps to follow.
When integrity issues surface, the
CEO must accept full responsibility
and start in play a set of actions to
set it right.
One of the most difficult aspects
of managing an integrity crisis is to
allow the facts to develop in a
searching, honest and
comprehensive way. There is a
human tendency to defend
Reputation like a forest takes
years to grow but can burn down
A strong foundation is built on
strong reality – the ability to tell
the truth and add to the truth, not
speak half truths.
A self confident CEO will present
the company to the board and the
employees in the most honest
way, he will not lead either astray.