Ethics and compliance professionals need one of two weapons in their arsenal, and preferably both.
First, the authority to decide on problems presented to them by employees. Second, the ability to escalate problems they cannot solve on their own.
Without these weapons, we are powerless to help. We (and others) soon realize that we talk a good game but can’t get anything done. Cynicism creeps in. When meaningful action is randomly taken, it is perceived as a double standard.
We all need ground troops and air cover. If you are missing either one today, devise a plan to acquire it.