高级真题全套听力视频(中英双字)   点击体验   立即获取

称职测试BEC高级阅读文章精选:称职测试是否适当   作者:英国《金融时报》 安德鲁•希尔

The “fit and proper” test is regulators’ and professional associations’ tool of choice for assessing suitability for office – a spirit-level for acceptable conduct. “适当人选”测试(“fit and proper” test)是监管机构与专业协会选择用来评估被测者是否称职的工具,是检验被测者表现是否过关的“水平仪”。
This month, for instance, the UK’s Financial Services Authority used it against banker Peter Cummings. The watchdog banned him for life from high finance and said he had encouraged a “culture of optimism” at HBOS’s corporate lending division that had helped bring the bank down. 例如,本月英国金融服务管理局(FSA)用该测试让银行家彼得•卡明斯(Peter Cummings)栽了个跟头。卡明斯被这家监管机构终生禁止从事“高级金融”(high finance)工作。英国金融服务管理局指出,卡明斯鼓励了哈利法克斯苏格兰银行(HBOS)企业贷款部门的“乐观主义风气”,这种风气是导致该银行破产的一个原因。
But is the “fit and proper” test itself fit for purpose? While everyone agrees these are qualities business leaders should have, few can agree precisely what those terms mean. Even the central bank for central banks – the Bank for International Settlements – says “the assessment of fitness, propriety and other qualifications is a judgmental matter” and suggests bank supervisors may have to work it out on a case-by-case basis. US legislators lowered the threshold to disqualify company directors from “substantial unfitness” to mere “unfitness” after a rash of corporate scandals 10 years ago, but courts still wrangle over the definition. 但“适当人选”测试本身适当吗?虽然所有人都同意,必须让适当的人担任企业领袖,但在“适当”的具体内涵上很少人能达成一致。就连各央行的央行——国际清算银行(Bank for International Settlements)也表示,“对适当性以及其他方面资质的评估是个见仁见智的问题”。该行建议银行监管机构应该具体问题具体分析。10年前,在一连串企业丑闻爆发以后,美国立法机构提高了企业董事任职资格的最低标准,从“严重不合适”提高至“不合适”,但一些法院仍然就这个标准的定义争执不下。
Many supervisors explain what the terms mean in relation to others’ judgments. If, say, you’re struck off by a professional body such as the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales, you’ll be flagged as offside if you want to buy an English football club – and vice versa. (Looking at many clubs’ finances, this may be a good thing.) 很多监管机构参照其他机构的判断来解释这些标准。例如,如果你被英格兰及威尔士特许会计师协会(Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales)之类的专业机构除名,那你就没有资格购买一家英国足球俱乐部,反之亦然。(瞧瞧很多俱乐部的财务状况,没有资格购买或许是件好事。)
In any case, executives frequently bounce back from highly negative independent assessments. What one company, or jurisdiction, deems unsuitable behaviour, another may consider acceptable. 无论如何,高管在独立评估中得到非常负面的评价之后,往往还能恢复元气。被一家公司或一个评审团认定为不适当的行为,在另一家公司或另一个评审团看来或许是可以接受的。
UK media regulator Ofcom last week admonished James Murdoch for conduct during the phone-hacking scandal that “repeatedly fell short of [what was] expected of him as a chief executive officer and chairman”. (It was part of a ruling that British Sky Broadcasting, which Mr Murdoch chaired, was a fit and proper broadcast licence-holder.) Later that day Mr Murdoch was reported to be in line to take responsibility for the US television operations of News Corp, BSkyB’s largest shareholder. In 2006, the FSA censured and fined (but did not ban) Philippe Jabre, the hedge fund manager, for market abuse and misconduct. He took his business – and moneymaking skills – to Switzerland, where he flourishes. 英国媒体监管机构英国通信办公室(Ofcom)上周就詹姆斯•默多克(James Murdoch)在电话窃听丑闻中的行为对其提出警告,称其“作为首席执行官和董事长,屡次做出不符合自己身份的事情”。(与此同时,英国通信办公室裁定,由默多克担任董事长的英国天空广播公司(BSkyB)适宜继续持有播出牌照。)当天晚些时候,传出默多克将掌管新闻集团(News Corp,BSkyB的最大股东)美国电视业务的消息。2006年,英国金融服务管理局指责对冲基金经理菲利普•贾布里(Philippe Jabre)滥用市场、行为不端,并对其处以罚款(但没有取消其从业资格)。贾布里把业务(以及赚钱的本事)带到瑞典,做得风生水起。
Regulators can be wrong. Executives who stray can return to the right path. Most deserve the opportunity to do so. But it is precisely because, at the margin, judgments of fitness and propriety are often subjective and moveable that business leaders should set their sights higher. 监管机构也会犯错。走上迷途的高管能够回归正途。他们中的大多数人都应该得到改过自新的机会。但正是因为对适当性的界定往往是主观的、可变的,所以企业领袖应该把自己的标准定得高一些。
At a seminar on business ethics last week, Archbishop Vincent Nichols, head of the Catholic church in England and Wales, referred to Plato’s allegory of the human soul as a chariot driven by two winged horses – one representing desires and appetites, the other courage and a sense of higher purpose. He urged corporate leaders, like Plato’s charioteer, to harness both the desire for profit maximisation and the need to do good, principled business. 在上周召开的一场企业伦理研讨会上,天主教英格兰与威尔士总主教团总主教文森特•尼科尔斯(Archbishop Vincent Nichols)提到柏拉图关于灵魂的寓言。柏拉图把人的灵魂比作一辆战车,拉动战车的是两匹飞马,一匹代表欲望,另一匹代表勇气和更崇高的目标。他敦促企业领袖要像柏拉图寓言中的驾车人一样,既要驾驭实现利润最大化的欲望,又要紧抓企业的良知和原则性。
The task is difficult. Companies want their leaders to show at least some of the go-getting optimism the misguided Mr Cummings brought to HBOS. Even the official investigators who in 1971 damned Robert Maxwell, the corrupt newspaper tycoon, as a man who could not “be relied on to exercise proper stewardship of a publicly quoted company”, acknowledged his “abilities and energy”. 这个任务很艰巨。企业希望其领袖至少表现出一些天不怕地不怕的乐观主义精神,也就是误入歧途的卡明斯带给HBOS的那种精神。官方调查人员在1971年谴责腐败的报业大亨罗伯特•马克斯韦尔(Robert Maxwell):“不能相信他会恰当地管理一家上市企业。”但就连他们也承认,马克斯韦尔“很有能力、精力过人”。
It is therefore tempting to assume that the existence of a bright line –a formal, unbendable definition of fitness and propriety – would alone have prevented Maxwell from going on to use those talents to perpetrate one of the most notorious frauds in business history. But it did not. 因此,这个想法十分诱人:只要有了一条明显的界线——能够正式、明确地界定何为“适当”,我们就能阻止马克斯韦尔施展其才能、犯下商业史上最臭名昭著的一起欺诈案。但事实并非如此。
Archbishop Nichols last week proposed church teaching as a framework for business behaviour. But he added: “Moral decision-making is more than a matter of compliance . . . What matters is practice and the cultivation of habits – skills – which over time form character and make acting well easier and more habitual.” 尼科尔斯总主教上周提议,以天主教教义作为商业行为的框架。但他补充道:“合乎道德的决策不仅是合规的问题……重要的是实践,以及习惯(技巧)的培养,长期坚持就会习惯成自然,做起来更加容易,也更顺手。”
In other words, executives should not merely do enough to pass the basic, often poorly defined and subjective tests of their moral and professional fibre. They should be working out regularly to acquire a level of fitness that far exceeds the currently accepted norm. 换句话说,高管不应仅仅满足于通过“适当人选”这样的测试——这些测试只是对其道德品质和专业水平的基本测试,往往定义模糊,也比较主观。他们应不断努力,达到远远高于当前大家普遍接受标准的称职水平。

未经允许不得转载:商务英语学习网站-BEC备考网 » BEC高级阅读文章精选:称职测试

赞 (2)

评论 0

  • 昵称 (必填)
  • 邮箱 (必填)
  • 网址