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Pt. 3 of 18. Lobbying, leadership lessons from organised crime


For the good of society – [inlinetweet prefix=”@mgriffin_uk” tweeter=”@mgriffin_uk” suffix=”null”]18 leadership lessons from organised crime[/inlinetweet]


In Part 1, “Ambition” we set the scene.

According to Interpol, the UN and WTO the organised crime industry is one of the worlds largest with quantifiable revenues of at least $3 Trillion per year and despite trillions of dollars worth of investment to counter act their growth the industry is growing faster than ever leaving a trail of devastation in its wake.

In a world first we reveal how Syndicates, some of whose annual revenues top $200 Billion use influence, resources, technology and vision to build global empires and translate it into a business language that philanthropists can use to build prosperous companies that can help repair some of the societal damage by creating new jobs, simplifying international expansion, building engaged workforces and creating new, selfless collaborative cultures.

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During our investigation we uncovered 18 categories, to read them just click on the link below:

  1. Ambition
  2. Customer Service
  3. Bribery and Corruption
  4. Devolved decision making
  5. External Problem Resolution
  6. Internal Problem Resolution
  7. Local Touch
  8. The Lean Team
  9. Consistency
  10. Loyalty
  11. Perks
  12. Disruptive Innovation
  13. The Flight to Favourable Jurisdictions
  14. React to Real Time Events
  15. Process as the Enemy
  16. Spying on the Competition
  17. Emigres Clusters
  18. Trust, Faith and Openness


(3) Bribery and Corruption

What this means to the Shadow Industry

It’s a well established fact that the Shadow Industry uses its large cash reserves and “persuasive leverage techniques” to force or cajole people into helping them stay hidden, give up information and grease the wheels of business so where there is mass crime there is almost always bribery and corruption. In Italy alone in 2012 the International Monetary Fund calculated that the Government lost $78.8Bn due to corruption. Putting this into perspective if Italy’s corruption was a separate country it would be the 76th largest economy in the world, larger than Serbia and the same size as Croatia.

Everyone knows the allure of money and everyone understands the doors that can suddenly get unlocked if someone finds the right leverage.


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What this means to legitimate industries

Bribery and corruption isn’t unique to the criminal underworld but fortunately, and although it’s not as rare as it should be it’s not widespread in legitimate businesses. Bribery and Corruption though has one aim – to create leverage that can be used for business advantage. Legitimate organisations, as is often the case, have their own name for a practice that looks to create similarly advantageous outcomes. That activity, of course, lobbying and it’s widespread and lucrative – so much so that in 2013  alone Western organisations spent over $3.2 Billion and employed over 12,000 full time lobbyists to promote their agendas.

Lobbying, although sometimes frowned on, is a legal practice and it’s known that companies often seek a ten times return on any spending, consequently we can perform a rudimentary calculation which would suggest that lobbying overall boosts organisations top lines by over $32 Billion. It’s also highly likely though that this figure is low balled because as we know lobbying can be used to try to secure many different outcomes which include everything from preventing a blanket ban on the sales of specific weapon systems to specific countries all the way through to encouraging law makers and regulators to allow driverless cars on our roads. 


In an ideal world it’s likely that your organisation would like the politicians and policy makers to bring in a law that rules everyone has to buy your product or service but back in the real world, and back to the democracies that we live in, it’s unlikely that that’s ever going to happen. Used wisely lobbying can be a powerful tool that tilts the market in your favor but the benefits have to be carefully weighed against the potential publicity pitfalls that can you can fall into if you’re not vigilant.

The key takeaways are:

  • Lobby only on important issues that matter to your business or your industry
  • Lobby ethically and avoid compromising situations
  • Always have your customers interests at heart

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