Sunday, October 15, 2017
I wrote this "Humor Me" column in Speaker magazine a while back. Enjoy!
I never dreamed of being a college professor. Does anybody? When my third-grade teacher asked us about our dream job, Molly said astronaut. Evan: actor. Perry: Obtain a terminal degree and lecture on legal morasses.
Continue reading by clicking .jpg to the left
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
One of my favorite activities - Giving high school students a taste of college, with a simulated "mock class" at GSU:
I. First Day of Class Simulation
Index Card for Book Giveaways:
Favorite Movie or TV Show dealing with LAW
Syllabus Excerpt – Wormy Legal Disclaimer…
Any and all legal opinions or statements as to legal matters made by the Instructor are for class discussion purposes only, and are never to be taken as dispensing legal advice. This includes any conversations with students, whether during or outside class time.
II. Social Media Law in the Workplace
Did you know:
The Federal Trade Commission permits employers to do a deep web search on job applicants, going back seven years
Employees have very little protection against getting fired for inappropriate posts, even if done off company time and on personal equipment
In Georgia, an “at will employee” may be fired for any reason, unless:
1- A contract says otherwise
2- union - collective bargaining agreement
3- company handbook
4 - discrimination laws
Employees represent the company 24/7?
Sunday, September 3, 2017
1. Don't let anyone crush your professional dreams. However, the riskier your dream, the better your backup plan must be.
2. Live life with no regrets. Sometimes doing the “wrong" career thing may be the right thing for you. Just be prepared to deal with the consequences.
Continue reading 10 Motivators for Professional Success
Friday, June 30, 2017
Later this summer...
KEYNOTE: 99 MOTIVATORS FOR COLLEGE SUCCESS
Perry’s interactive session teaches college and high school students how to succeed in the college classroom. His unconventional tips and real world examples are included in his award-winning book, 99 Motivators for College Success. In addition, Perry demonstrates how to use FEAR-FOCUS-PASSION™ as the fuel to drive your career decisions, through his own harrowing life events at ages 15 (Fear) and 21 (Focus), which clarified a career re-direction at 27. (Passion)
Perry Binder is a legal studies professor in Georgia State University’s Robinson College of Business. Professor Binder received the Robinson Teaching Award in 2013 and 2005, and the MBA Teaching Award in 2008. He is also an attorney and author of numerous articles and books. His latest book, 99 Motivators for College Success, is aimed at inspiring Millennials to flourish in college and become leaders in the business world. In 2016/2017, 99 Motivators was selected for the Book Award Program by Randolph College in Lynchburg, Virginia. Each year, the College's Alumni Office selects and sends a special book to hundreds of rising high school seniors nationwide, who are academically strong and possess leadership potential.
Monday, June 5, 2017
Saturday, May 13, 2017
Just completed out-of-town client sessions with these interactive law scenarios:
- Thinking Like Your Attorney
- Thinking Like Your Client
- Insights into Your Client’s and Attorney’s Thought Processes
- Insight into In-House Counsel and Brand Strategy
Fantastic and engaging group!
Sunday, December 25, 2016
An old lesson for a new year...
(Elevating Trust Has Inspired Customer Satisfaction)
© 2003-2017 Perry Binder
This article first appeared in Professional Speaker magazine.
Reprinted: The Human Resource; ASTD Atlanta Newsletter; Atlanta HR Leadership Forum; Atlanta CPCU Newsletter
Do any of these statements ring familiar?
- In the old days, a deal could be done on a handshake.
- A person's word used to be as good as gold.
- The bottom line has become more important than people.
I recently spoke before a group of HR and insurance professionals about customers losing trust in their industry. As the pressure to produce increases, the industry seems to cut corners. Sadly, company communication is breaking down by ignoring the very backbone of the industry, the loyal clients.
Discussing the topic of ethics before a captive audience is a very delicate process. The presenter must strike the appropriate balance between making the audience comfortable by offering objective information in an energized and thoughtful manner, without excessive preaching about the importance of ethical behavior.
I believe that each of us has a strong moral compass which gets tested every day on the job. As a presenter, if I can provide concrete examples to an audience of how unethical behavior will adversely affect a company, I can then initiate a dialogue of ethical dilemmas in any industry. My goal is to give participants a frame of reference, not to instill ethical beliefs. By providing people with relevant analogies, hopefully they will develop the tools needed to prevent any unethical situations arising in a company setting.
I. The Erosion of Client Confidence
The recent explosion of bad faith lawsuits filed by dissatisfied customers is evidence of an erosion in confidence:
- An insurance company's delay and denial of a homeowner's claim for cleaning up toxic mold caused by a water leak led the client to sue the insurance company.
$6.2 million compensatory damages
$12 million punitive damages
$5 million for mental anguish
$8.9 million in attorney fees!!
- An insurance company's "No settlement stance" led a client to sue his automobile insurance company for bad faith. The client had been in a car accident which led to the death of one motorist, and disabling injuries to another. The company refused to settle for the policy limits of $25,000, in spite of overwhelming evidence of the client's fault in the accident. This led to a jury verdict in excess of $25,000, thus exposing the client to personal liability. The client then turned around and sued the insurance company for bad faith.
The result: $2.6 million in compensatory damages and $145 million in punitive damages (The judge lowered the jury;s award to "only" $1 million in compensatory damages, and $25 million in punitive damages)
If the initial, knee-jerk reaction of a company is to turn its back on a client, all of the trust built over the years with that client is instantly lost. Immediately, an adversarial relationship is created. It is the very nature of confrontational environments which may plant the seeds of unethical behavior.
II. Building Trust is the Key to Avoiding Ethical Dilemmas
As a lighthearted analogy, I use an Aesop's Fable, where two buddies (insurance salesperson and client) are traveling together in the woods, when a bear rushes out in front of them. On instinct, the salesperson grabs a tree branch and climbs a tree, stranding the client. Ever resourceful, the client feigns death, knowing the bear won't eat dead meat. After the bear sniffs close to the client's ear, it eventually leaves the area. As the salesperson climbs down the tree, he laughingly asks the client: "What did that big bad bear whisper?" The client glares, then offers: "He said, never trust a friend who deserts you in a pinch."
This issue of trust permeates any discussion of company ethics. It is a message which must start at the top, and is a number one priority in all company-customer relationships.
III. Tips on Ethics Presentations for Every Industry
1. An observation: The role of the presenter is not to change peoples' minds about ethics - rather it is to give the audience a frame of reference with examples of unethical behavior.
2. Start the session off in a light manner, using a humorous story to make a larger point.
3. Never put audience members on the spot. The topic of ethics is so sensitive, that the facilitator must put no one on the defensive.
4. Remind the audience about the good news: That most people in the industry have very strong morals, and usually do the ethical thing.
5. Find specific cases of extreme ethical violations in a particular industry. These examples will generate discussion on how solid communication and trust might have prevented an escalation of unethical behavior.
6. Give hope to audience members. Remind them that special attention to the customer will slowly build back any lost trust.
7. Consider a presentation where audience members construct a brief, uniform Ethics Mission Statement.
8. Emphasize that employers must continually educate employees on company ethics. There are no quick-fixes to such an important topic.
9. Have fun in any presentation! (the most important lesson of all)
10. Remember E.T.H.I.C.S. - Elevating Trust Has Inspired Customer Satisfaction
Perry Binder, J.D. is a legal studies professor in Georgia State University's Robinson College of Business in Atlanta, Georgia. Professor Binder conducts seminars for large and small companies on a range of topics, including social media ethics, litigation prevention, and sexual harassment/discrimination.