Thinking

Here you’ll find our opinions, viewpoints and rants. But don’t forget to add your comments – good or bad – on anything you like or loathe. We value your feedback.

Six Strings to GRC Success . . .
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I am just about to go into ‘silent running’ mode as I depart to build another guitar on the wonderful Balearic/Piteuse island of Formentera . . . So you won’t hear much from me for a few weeks unless you follow my ‘Guitarra – Part Deux’ blog.… Read More

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Risk Awareness & The Bear
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Take a look at the awareness test here, before you read the rest of this post.

Have you looked at this?

OK . . .  you get the point . . .

This is an interesting phenomenon . . .… Read More

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STOP! The Controls Madness . . . Part deux!
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In Part 1 of this post I talked about the fact that the relationship between better risk management and more control is not intuitive or even direct. We discussed the shortcomings of the traffic light system as a control. We also touched on the issues in financial control with the false sense of security created by automated controls, such as those for purchase limits for example.… Read More

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STOP! The Controls Madness . . . Part I
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I saw this headline recently and it got me thinking . . . .

Many organisations have been encouraged, and in some cases required, to focus their financial risk efforts on controls, developing an internal control system, regularly assessing the efficacy of controls and reporting against that for audit and compliance purposes.… Read More

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The ‘Great Potato Fraud of 2012’
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I wrote a few weeks ago of the pride and complacency of the middle management fraudster and the ‘smartest guys in the room’

On a recent ski trip I had met a guy on a chairlift
who proceeded to tell me his approach to ‘supplementing his income’ including “finding suppliers you need on a consistent basis who you can overpay, and get cash back later, minus a ‘consideration’”

Some readers of my blog expressed disbelief at these comments.… Read More

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Perception, Risk and Safeguards
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I gave a talk today at the Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Symposium in Washington D.C. We divided the time 60/40 between my presentation and a group discussion on implications, especially for the Insurance industry. We had a lively discussion with CROs and risk professionals and my observations on perception of risk seemed to resonate. … Read More

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Fraud, ‘Smart Guys’ and ‘Better Than Average’
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I was skiing the weekend before last in the Swiss Alps and as luck would have it, a rather interesting conversation developed on a chair lift. A pretty long lift as it happened . . .

The only other person on the chair was a guy who introduced himself as Peter who asked what I did for business.… Read More

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Accounting Regulation Reducing Fraud, Really?
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An article in CFO magazine today announced the opinion that the US ‘Jumpstart Our Business Startups’ (JOBS) Act, whilst easing the Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX, Sarbox) standards, might pave the way for fraud. You can read the article here . . .

From my viewpoint, the SOX benchmark has done little to address the causes or even the identification of fraud.… Read More

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Will it make the boat go faster?
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I had a interesting chat with a friend the other day, where he recounted this quote from a world record beating sailor (I forget the name, but it is not critical to the story).

With any new suggestion for additional ‘stuff’ for his craft (especially technology), he would always respond ‘will it make the boat go faster?’.… Read More

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Risk, misplaced confidence, early warning systems and health checks
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I am sitting in a 6th floor office in Manhattan and ruminating between meetings. Over the past couple of years I have talked with numerous finance executives, controllers, risk and control specialists and audit folk on the topic of managing and monitoring risk in the processes that affect the financial statement.… Read More

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