Jim Nortz is a nationally recognized expert and thought leader in the field of business ethics and compliance.
Jim spent the first 17 years of his career as a litigator trying both criminal and civil cases before becoming Crompton Corporation’s first Vice President, Business Ethics and Compliance in 2003.
Since then, Jim has served as a compliance officer at Crompton and for four other multinational corporations, as well as Corporate Compliance Director at Sutherland Global Services. Currently he serves as Chief Compliance Officer for Carestream Health.
Mr. Nortz is a frequent guest lecturer at the University of Rochester’s Simon School of Business, RIT’s Saunders School of Business, St. John Fisher College and Nazareth College.
Jim writes the monthly business ethics columns for the Association of Corporate Counsel Docket magazine and the Rochester Business Journal and is a contributing writer for Corporate Compliance Insights and The Business Journals.
Jim served on the Board of Directors for the Ethics and Compliance Officers Association (“ECOA”) for eight years. He currently serves on the Board of the Rochester Area Business Ethics Foundation and is a member of the Rochester chapter of Conscious Capitalism.
Despite the existence of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines (instated to allow for leniency toward corporations held criminally liable for the actions of rogue employees), for more than 20 years there were approximately zero instances of the federal government cutting businesses slack based on the merits of their ethics and compliance programs. Until 2012, that is.Read more →
As satisfying as it may feel to point fingers when something goes wrong, finding a scapegoat only serves to focus a group's frustration; it does nothing to solve the underlying problem. Visit a boardroom in the wake of a corporate scandal or tune in to virtually any political discussion and you'll find the blame game isn't an exercise unique to children. How about a more constructive approach?Read more →
Contrary to popular opinion, there are real, measureable financial benefits to running a “nice guy” business. Jim Nortz explains what it means to be a conscious capitalist, outlines the four tenets firms practicing conscious capitalism follow and provides a roadmap to the type of success its practitioners enjoy. Starbucks, Honda, 3M -- that's good company to keep.Read more →
Most organizations espouse ethical practices, but it's the rare few that operationalize their ethical standards, weaving them into the very fabric of the organization so that their core values are reflected in all of their practices, from hiring and performance reviews to rewards and recognition and firings. Walking out these values doesn't happen by chance.Read more →
Strong leaders don't just know the right thing to do, they want to do it and then make it happen. Jim Nortz shares an experience in which he saw need for drastic, immediate change, pulled the necessary stakeholders together to devise a strategy, and then watched as the would-be plan fizzled and died. There were multiple failures that day, and Jim admits his was one of them.Read more →
Unfortunately, it's not uncommon for professionals to be asked to compromise their convictions. When considering a hypothetical ethical dilemma, most of us probably believe we'd take the moral high ground, but even the most honorable among us can get ensnared in morally questionable schemes. Make sure you know which lines you're willing to cross when your principles are tested.Read more →
It's said that the measure of a person's character is how they behave when no one is looking. Cheating at work can be a very alluring idea, especially when it seems there will be no victims and great benefit. Corporate counsel can have quite the job ahead of them in battling morally questionable conduct, but Jim Nortz offers several suggestions for how to do it well.Read more →
The temptation to bend the rules can be great, particularly when it seems the regulatory watchdogs aren't taking notice and it's clear that issues of noncompliance have gone undetected. Maintaining a culture of ethics means doing the right thing at all times, not allowing yourself to become complacent when it comes to doing business ethically.Read more →
Does it really make good business sense to always operate in accordance with the highest ethical standards? Don’t business professionals need a bit of moral elbow room to do their work in a responsible way?Read more →
As often as not, our clients come to us with difficult problems, expecting more than a recitation of the law; they want to know the right (honorable) thing to do. This is both a great privilege and a great responsibility, and shame on us if we lack the courage of our convictions to steer our clients in the right direction.Read more →