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Six practical steps to kill the kudzu of corporate policies

In-house lawyers who have a masochistic streak might swing a scythe against the invasive species known as corporate policies (See my post of Nov. 2, 2009: corporate policies with 12 references.). James Nortz, the director of compliance for Bausch and Lomb, plants six seeds of ways to “hoe the line” on weedlike policies, all in ACC Docket, Vol. 28, Sept. 2009 at 104-105.

  1. “Gather and kill them by the dozens.” Only keep policies that are absolutely essential for the garden that is your business.

  2. “Remove the idiotic ‘applies to all employees” clause.” Talk about over-reaching!

  3. Organize corporate policies so they are easy to find. Nortz advocates a 60-second test: if an employee can’t find a policy online in less than a minute, you have pruning to do.

  4. “Close the barn door.” Don’t let more weeds take hold; root them out or never let them sprout in the first place.

  5. “Translate them into all necessary languages and provide training.” If the policy doesn’t merit translation and training, it doesn’t deserve to flourish.

  6. Audit and monitor compliance. Find out whether employees know about policies and wear them in their boutonnière.

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