The condoning or condemnation of toxic leaders may be prevalent in organizations as well as in government. Corruption, narcissism, and unethical behaviors may be cancerous for the stability and sustainability of any organization or individuals for that matter. However, a person that possesses competence, resilience, vision, and character may learn to become an effective and transformational leader. More so, the personality of a leader may be a pattern of thinking, feeling, and acting with regard to the environment, including other people. These characteristics may influence the type of leadership an individual he or she may become (Northouse , 2007).
As indicated by Hautala (2006), a relationship between personality and leadership exist, the results indicate that leadership behaviors varied with leaders’ personality based on the leaders’ own appraisals as well as subordinates’ appraisals. Nevertheless, according to Machiavelli (as cited in Kellerman, 2004), the only kind of bad leader is the weak leader. This paper will examine two toxic organizations and contributing factors influencing their toxicity. In addition, an explanation will be provided regarding the independent situations of these toxic organizations and the social impact they created. Finally, an analysis of the missing checks and balances for these two toxic organizations will be explored.
Toxic Organizational Situations
Over the last several years it has been difficult to ignore the recent abuse of power, corruption and unethical behaviors by individuals in corporate America and government. To deny bad leadership without taking corrective action may catapult others to continue exhibiting these behaviors. Based on the reading by Kellerman (2004), Americans are familiar with bad, ineffective, and unethical leaders and followers. Organizational destructiveness may occur when toxic leaders create a precarious environment. According to Lipman-Blumen (2005) toxic leaders purposely harm others to enhance themselves at others’ expense. This type of behavior can seriously harm people and may not be conducive in establishing positive relationships and achieving organizational outcomes (Lipman-Blumen, 2005).
The unwillingness to change, as in the case of financial analyst Mary Keeker with Morgan Stanley Dean Witter and Company, may provide rude awakening results for those who followed her financial advice (Kellerman, 2004). Lipman-Blumen (2005) suggest that some toxic leaders maintain a grand illusion that life is both meaningful and manageable and as humans we fall into this abyss in exchange for security, certainty, and order. This type of discernment may contribute to a toxic environment. Thus, Padilla, Hogan, and Kaiser (2007) suggest that destructive leadership is defined by the toxic behavioral culture created by the leader, follower, and environmental factors.
The same can be said for corrupt business leader Andrew Fastow (Kellerman, 2004). Over the last several...