Building Accountability Across the Enterprise – A Roundtable Discussion in Chicago


On Thursday, November 9, LRN was privileged to host a peer group roundtable discussion on the topic of HOW to build cultural accountability across the enterprise. Participating Partners included Allstate, Astellas Pharma US, Exelon, Illinois Tool Works, Kraft Heinz, Regal Beloit, US LBM Holdings, and Wabash National.

The gathering, at NoMi Kitchen at the Park Hyatt in Chicago over lunch, was an opportunity to explore how to establish accountability among executives and middle management to better influence ethical behavior and ultimately drive performance. It was the third in a series of discussions LRN is hosting around the country, following similar events held in Boston and Hartford, where participants freely shared their concerns and problem-solving ideas.

In Chicago, participants shared stories of ethical breaches as lessons learned for the companies, as well as tactics for communicating with and training managers, including email groups, blogs, and polls about behavior or ethical dilemmas, such as “What would you do?” and “What were they thinking?” Some best practices to coach and develop more accountability across the enterprise cited themed topics such as “recognizing the pitfalls of motivated blindness,” “developing a ‘Spidey’ sense,” and “avoiding ethical fading.”

The importance of values alignment was emphasized, especially in language embedded within global codes of conduct and used by frontline management. “There is a clear need to build a common, unified narrative that strengthens and drives cultural inclusivity, and helps the extended enterprise feel connected to purpose,” concluded one participant.

In fact, many companies represented have significant employee populations operating in manufacturing or offline facilities and are seeking ways to integrate those members of the workforce into the common values narrative.

While some organizations represented are further along than others, all agreed on the importance of leaders as the primary catalyst for engagement and are searching for ways to drive greater leadership ownership and accountability.