10 identifiers of toxic leadership

  1. The Offenders

The strategy is “Offence is the best defence”. They start a meeting by ‘attacking’ the participants. The aim is to put everybody on the defensive, and silence all criticism or concerns likely to be raised.

  1. The Multiple Identity leaders

Integrity can only be defined in one way – the matching of thoughts, speech and action.  Multiple-speak leaves no doubt about where the leader stands – not with you, for sure.

This is not to be confused with Edward DeBono’s thinking hats. It is about masking the real identity.

  1. The Cartel-Builders

The only objective of building a coterie or cartel is to conceal – conceal the truth that is detrimental to their image or vested interests.

A lot of effort goes into building invincible fortresses, to prevent leakage of information, during their tenure and later. The second line is chosen with great care, not for capability, but loyalty and partnership-in-crime.  These are some of the strongest bonds in the world. Exposure of any one would expose the others.

  1. The Mighty- Right Leaders

“Might is Right”, and “We Will because We Can” are the driving forces. Call them bullies or whatever an average mind can think.

It could be the last resort for those who cannot convince with logic. Need we say more ?

  1. The Alienators

They divide larger concentrations of power, into smaller ineffective pieces. All structures, policies and statements are designed to set people/groups against one another.  The buzzwords are disunity, dissension, disagreement, hostility –  never spoken, just implemented.

History has proved that “Divide and Rule” succeeds.

  1. The Corridor Strategists

Loud remarks and gestures are made in corridors to show who is In or Out of favour. It is meant to influence the attitude and actions of the team.

  1. The User-Buyers

They buy loyalty and complicity with monetary favors.  People may suffer abuse and humiliation throughout the year, to be rewarded in the appraisals.

  1. The Place Mats

They are placed in a certain position, and given inside information and power. They are implementers, not initiators.

  1. The Eliminators

The only strategy employed is to eliminate opposition.

  1. The Diplomats

This guy or gal is a sweet talker, employed to be in the good books of all and sundry, and extract information. Needless to say, his loyalty lies only with the boss.

This is the most dangerous and treacherous species. One does not know the nature of evil one is fighting against.

12 thoughts on “10 identifiers of toxic leadership

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