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BookWatch: This is what separates honest executives from white-collar criminals

Bloomberg, Getty Images

Clockwise from left: Allen Stanford, Dennis Kozlowski, Sam Waksal, Andrew Fastow.

What drives some of the highest-profile financial crooks to commit their fraud? Eugene Soltes, a Harvard Business School professor who spent countless hours talking to and corresponding with them, concludes that for many of them, it wasn’t always a coldhearted calculation of what they thought they could get away with.

Instead, he writes in his book, “Why They Do It; Inside the Mind of the White-Collar Criminal”: “They put little effort into these decisions because they never deeply felt that the decisions were harmful to themselves or others.

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