The Jedi Master of Business Compliance:

Why compliance training is like putting a force-field around your business?


As American companies expand their reach to global markets, they must be mindful of the various compliance risks that come along with doing business in foreign countries. From anti-corruption laws to data privacy regulations, there are several compliance risks that companies need to be aware of. Lack of compliance with confusing and byzantine international business regulations can result in costly penalties and a loss of reputation for any organization interested in doing business abroad but making international expansion even more complex is a network of often-conflicted local, regional, and national laws which vary wildly from region to region, state to state, and even city to city. Compliance is difficult…and Non-Compliance can be Costly: For example, some of the most far-reaching regulatory hurdles are connected to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). This anti-corruption law is designed to stop international bribery and “pay-for-play” corruption, and the penalties for violating it are severe. For each violation of the anti-bribery provisions, the FCPA provides that corporations and other business entities are subject to a fine of up to $2 million. On top of that, Individuals, including officers, directors, stockholders, and agents of companies, are subject to a fine of up to $250,000 and imprisonment for up to five years. That is on top of additional penalties which can be levied by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of up to $500,000 or the amount by which the entity profited from the offense.
While virtually anyone can get behind the spirit of the law – after all, global corruption is nothing in which any legitimate business wishes to be involved – the issue becomes a bit more complicated when assessing the incredibly broad scope of the FCPA’s regulatory scheme. The FCPA covers not only companies with securities registered in the U.S., but also virtually any business organization – whether that be corporation, partnership, association, business trust, sole proprietorship, or any other business entity – with its principal place of business in the United States or which is organized within the laws of a U.S. state, territory, possession, or commonwealth. And that is not all – the law also covers any U.S. citizen, national, or resident.  
Given the size and complexity of many international companies, it can be incredibly challenging to ensure compliance with the FCPA, let alone the myriad other regulations which apply on a case-by-case basis. Since the law applies to U.S.-based individuals and organizations alike – regardless of where in the world they may be doing business – companies and individuals may be liable under the law even if none of the violations or related decisions took place in the U.S. In fact, even foreign-based corporations can be liable for non-compliance – all it takes is an act performed within U.S. territory on the company’s or the individual’s behalf.

The question is: How can U.S. based businesses avoid compliance problems when doing business overseas? 

When doing business overseas, it is important to be aware of the potential compliance risks that may arise. There are a number of ways to avoid compliance problems, including conducting due diligence on the local market, understanding the local regulatory environment, and having a compliance plan in place. By taking these steps, businesses can minimize the risk of compliance problems and ensure a smooth operation in foreign markets.

The problem is even when taking these steps, American business owners struggle understanding the difference between doing business in the U.S. and doing business abroad. Regulations like those propagated under the FCPA may directly conflict with local or national rules overseas. Different corporate cultures can lead to different rules and regulations which may seem unusual or difficult to comprehend for U.S. businesses. There is a world of difference between doing business in, for example, China, from the way business is conducted in the U.S. Both countries have their own regulatory interests and their own – often conflicting – national goals. What U.S. businesses need is expertise in threading the complex regulatory needle and in creating systems which can ensure continued compliance with a wide variety of cultures and regulatory rules.


Meet Compliance Expert Temitope Adeniyi Fadeyibi, one of the world's most sought- after compliance authorities dealing with extreme complex and challenging markets. Having worked in both, the United States and across multiple countries abroad, Temitope is one of the few experts in the world who understands both the 'American business mindset' and the complexities of becoming and remaining compliant with the wide variety of laws, rules, and regulations governing international business. Temitope has experienced leading corporate compliance efforts for companies in every industry from construction and banking to oil & gas. He has provided expert consulting, compliance system management, and compliance training allowing these companies to not only survive, but to thrive in some of the most convoluted compliance markets in the world, including (among others): Nigeria, Kenya, Benin, Zambia, Algeria, Namibia, Greece, Brazil, Argentina, Suriname, Colombia, Ghana and Liberia to name a few. He has earned the moniker: “The 'Jedi Master”' of business compliance by from many of his previous clients and employers, who have come to depend upon his expertise to ensure they are avoiding any violation – intentional or otherwise – of the complex tapestry of rules, and regulations. Mr. Adeniyi Fadeyibi understands that international business compliance needs to be treated as dealing with different forces (hence the 'Jedi Master' reference.) Global compliance means ensuring that your organization complies with all the international laws and rules, as well as the local laws and rules, in every country in which your company operates. As cross-border business and trade increases, so does the quantity and complexity of global compliance obligations. Compliance training is a MUST for every organization doing business abroad. Adeniyi Fadeyibi asserts... 

What are compliance systems and training, and why are they important?

Compliance systems allow international companies to institute standard procedures to ensure regulatory compliance, and the monitoring and auditing to ensure those procedures are being followed. Mr. Fadeyibi has created and instituted these systems for massive international companies. For example, when handling compliance for a major multinational oil & gas company operating in Nigeria – which is both the most oil-rich nation on the continent with high compliance risks– from 2007 through 2019, he personally worked with the regulatory agencies such as the Department of Petroleum Resources and the National Oil Spill Detection, and Response Agency to discuss the regulatory scheme and work out the procedures and processes which could best avoid non-compliance.  
Of course, a system is only as good as the people putting it into place, and that is why compliance training is fundamental to international success. Compliance training is the process of ensuring employees understand all the relevant laws, regulations, and internal policies that govern the function of your organization. It also ensures that they know how – and why – they need to adhere to them in their work.  Effective training walks employees through examples of how ethics and compliance apply to their roles in the workplace, and it can give them the guidance they need to handle different situations and dilemmas they may face.   Good compliance training helps employees flourish. They know their responsibilities and boundaries and can work productively with less supervision. They also know how to react and what steps to take when they encounter a new situation that puts their ethical training to the test. Not only does this training scheme – which Temitope has overseen countless times – the key to building a lasting ethical business culture which can adhere to the rules, it is also very helpful for employee morale, as employees can see firsthand how the decisions made by each individual can impact the whole company. The city of Houston is proud of the remarkable accomplishments Mr. Adeniyi Fadeyibi has had with American organizations doing business abroad and is grateful that , he has been Houston- based for the past 11 months. This – the home of the U.S. energy industry – is the perfect place for him to create and implement legal and regulatory systems and strategies for international oil & gas operations. He is one of the few, and among the best, people in the world capable of 'translating' complex compliance regulations into easy-to-understand terms for American based organizations and to make sure that those companies can ethically, legally, and profitably thrive in a. Global economy.