How to Ensure the Internal Whistleblowing System
2019-05-27 10:06 Monday
As many corporate whistleblowers have discovered, doing the right thing does not always pay off. Instead, telling the truth can lead to retribution and career destruction. Wendy Addison, Sylvain Mansotte and Michael Woodford, three former public company executives who have been whistleblowers, have posed the question: how do we ensure that we speak up safely?
For most whistleblowers, it was a life-changing experience. Based on her own experience, Wendy Addison believes this means she will go from her dream job, the CFO of a listed company in her native South Africa, to a homeless beggar on the streets of London.
"I was unemployed for 11 years and had a psychological breakdown," she said. "My only concern is survival."
From that low point, Addison embarked on a career in social science and neuroscience, eventually founding a consulting firm called SpeakOut SpeakUp. The company is not only working to address whistleblowing within the company, it is also trying to change organisational behaviour so that whistleblowers are no longer necessary.
Although the UK has made legislative progress through the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998, Woodford remains skeptical about the acceptability of whistleblowing in the companies.
"If you are a well-paid director of a public company, it is also in your self-interest to do the right thing," he says. "You want your system to be robust so that your company doesn't do things that you can be held accountable for. But does anyone really want whistleblowing?"
Anonymity Is A Safer Way to Blow the Whistle
In order to obtain safer way to blow the whistle, Mansotte has developed an online solution, which has developed into Whispli. Whispli is a safe and anonymous two-way communication solution, not only for corporate whistle-blowing, is also used to report sexual harassment and bullying in schools and universities.
Whispli users can anonymous consistently specified with the organization department or the third party to communicate. After initial contact, they can answer questions, provide more details and follow up further. As long as you use the password and the identification number of the case, you can visit Whispli from anywhere.
"It provides a source for reports of misconduct and misconduct," Mansotte said. "Some customers say they get four times as many reports using Whispli, so it helps people to stand up."
This product comes directly from Mansotte's own experience as a whistleblower. He believes it takes considerable courage to expose wrongdoing because it puts employees at risk. Nothing is more important to a whistleblower than security, and anonymity is the key to security.