It is estimated that upwards of $1 trillion dollars in bribes are exchanged each year. The benefits a company can reap from under-the-table payments are fairly obvious. Permits are expedited, lucrative government contracts are secured, and wheels are greased for expansion plans. Less obvious is the downside.

In this week's podcast, we talk to George Serafeim, an assistant professor of business administration at Harvard Business School, about his research on the ways bribery can damage a company, including hits to its reputation, relations with regulators and, often overlooked but just as important in his eyes, employee morale.

Listen to the podcast. (10 min., 10 MB)

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