Emerging Leaders Program

Emerging Leaders

ICLD 3.8 Toxic Leadership: Discussion Board

Instructor: Dr. Mitch
  1. Post a new discussion related to the topics covered in this module.  Your post needs to provide specific lessons learned with examples from this module helping you enhance your leadership capacity at work.
  2. After posting your discussion, review posts provided by other students in the class and reply to at least one of them. 


  • The Ted Talk on Destructive Leadership by Rhonda Martin was an interesting take on this topic. She discussed how for people to be a good leader, they must be a good follower first. It’s an interesting theory that I’ve never really given much thought. She points out that there’s hundreds of classes and courses (much like this one) to teach leadership skills/methods, but no one is teaching how to be a good follower. She points out that good followers should serve the mission/goals, participate in transformation, and have courage to speak up to leadership when things aren’t right. Team work is an essential skill in the ability of followers and should be developed.

    Regarding toxic leaders, they tend to be self-centered and only looking out for their “numbers” rather than the good of the people and the organization. It eventually will destroy any agency. Good employees leaving are the canary in the coal mine and only mediocre unhappy staff will remain.

  • It is hard to believe that toxic leaders are in so many different organizations still today. These individuals can ruin morale, disrupt productivity and essentially sabotage the agency’s mission. Watt advised that there are three ways an individual needs ensure they survive a toxic leader. First, stay committed to your values. Second, do not react to the toxic leader and finally always keep your emotions in check (2017). I could see how this could be very difficult at times, however, it is imperative to ensure you don’t destroy your own career in the process.
    Watt, R. (2017). Toxic leaders. 3.8, Week # 11. National Command and Staff College. Retrieved from https://cloud.scorm.com/content/courses/NAGVXPB5E6/ToxicLeadershipcdf55361-7b5e-4ce5-b3c2-c54ed6c7aae1/3/index_lms.html

  • Toxic leadership tears down its employees and subordinates more than I can count on. I have witnessed it first hand. A new supervisor changed the way they treated us since taking a new role and forgot where he came from. They disrespected us and would look down on us like they didn’t start in the same position.

    • I have to agree that many leaders forget what it is like to be in that position and the demands of the job everyday. Another thing that bothers me is when they assume that you are doing something but they have never observed you. However, it shouldn’t be surprising as these leaders don’t care for their members and are not worried about the damage the cause.

    • It’s very unfortunate, but I’ve run into this as well. Some people just can’t handle power and should not be in management positions. It will ruin an organization from the inside out. When staff are always having to walk on egg shells with everything they do and are micromanaged, it’s hard to show up for work and want to do anymore than the bare minimum.

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