A Copernican Revolution in Culture and Conduct Risk Management | Starling

Starling Team

Starling CEO Stephen Scott along with Starling Advisors Nicholas Christakis, Mirea Raaijmakers, and Martin Wheatly cowrote an article for Thomson Reuters Regulatory Intelligence titled “A Copernican Revolution in Culture and Conduct Risk Management”. The authors argue that traditional means of managing culture and conduct risk rely too much on outdated theories about employees behaving as rational actors. As a result, the mechanisms that firms use tend to rely heavily on a rules-based approach leveraging employee surveys and training as a means to encourage compliance.

In actuality, employees operate in complex environments where group norms and witnessed behavior can easily overwhelm the ‘tone from the top’. In this environment, new tools are required that can make sense of these complex systems and guide managers to more effective interventions.

Read the full article: A Copernican Revolution in Culture and Conduct Risk Management

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Designing to Avoid “Ordinary Unethicality”

Starling Team

Dave Nussbaum, managing editor at the Behavioral Scientist blog, recently sat down with Yuval Feldman at Bar-Ilan University Law School in Israel. Professor Feldman recently published the book The Law of Good People: Challenging States’ Ability to Regulate Human Behavior in which he examines how behavioral ethics could change legal design and enforcement.

Through the course of the interview, Professor Feldman describes how ethical violations are highly contagious. When left unchecked, such behavior will grow and the numerous, subtle rule violations that result end up creating new social norms for what is considered permissible legal behavior. These small rule violations “ordinary unethicality” gives people room to pursue their self-interest while still feeling comfortable with their ethical choices. Within a particular firm or in broader society, the cumulative impact has a greater impact on the destruction of social capital and trust than the few gross violations by truly “bad” people.

The full interview is available: Designing to Avoid “Ordinary Unethicality”: A Q&A with Yuval Feldman

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Positive Behavior May Be Just As Contagious | New York Times

Starling Team

Researchers have been studying how positive relationships can have a powerful impact on health. “Friends can exert a measurable and ongoing influence on your health behaviors in a way that a diet never can,” says Dan Buettner, a National Geographic fellow and author. When properly maintained, these relationships can provide helpful ‘nudges’ to encourage positive behaviors. Efforts are now underway to see how positive networks can be encouraged.

Read the article: The Power of Positive People

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Essay on Managing Culture in Banking by Outgoing New York Fed President Bill Dudley

Starling Team

Bill Dudley, the outgoing President of the New York Federal Reserve, offers an expansive and candid assessment of the topic of Culture. This essay coincides with a conference on “Reforming Culture and Behavior in the Financial Services Industry” sponsored by the New York Fed on June 18th at which Starling was invited to participate.

Mr. Dudley addresses many of the concerns raised around how to address the management of culture by pointing to recent advances in behavioral science and how those can be applied within organizations. Key to this is recognizing the role that social norms play in behavior and how employees behavioral cues from peers. With this understanding it is increasingly possible to leverage data science and quantitative approaches to measure the “cultural conditions” that work to prompt behavior in ways that are predictable and to better align incentives to achieve those outcomes.

Read the full essay: Coda: Candid Reflections on the Culture Conversation

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Executive Director of the Group of Thirty on Culture and Conduct Reform

Starling Team

Stuart Mackintosh, Executive Director of the Group of Thirty, posted a review of progress made around culture and conduct reform in banking in conjunction with the New York Fed Conference Reforming Culture and Behavior in the Financial Services Industry to be held on June 18th.

Mr Mackintosh points to the need for both sustained leadership as well as strong processes in place to foster and encourage the behaviors that sustain culture. These are particularly important in order to enable firms to stay current with evolving cultural norms such as around diversity, the role of business, or even as relates to technology advances.

Read the full article: Culture and Conduct Reform: A Permanent Mindset Change

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