The total toxic institution: when organisations fail psychologically, socially and morally

Eugenie A. Samier

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

3 Citations (Scopus)


Toxic leadership and toxic organisations appear to be common now, especially in the US where many of the statistics are available. Williams (2017 ) cites a number of studies and surveys that show a 50 per cent estimate in leaders and managers in the US who are ineffective, incompetent, or toxic, with increasing turnover and failure rates in chief executive officers as high as 75 per cent and up to 40 per cent of Fortune 500 executives engaging in misconduct. But the problem is also found in other countries— Veldsman's (2012 ) research has found a 30 per cent toxic leadership rate internationally in a survey of the literature showing that the most common causes are hubris, ego, and a lack of emotional intelligence. A number of authors have identified the ways in which organisations are toxic and the role of leadership in producing toxicity: the use of punitive and bullying management practices, lack of compassion and empathy, 'creeping' bureaucracy, overemphasis on the 'bottom line', performance assessment oriented towards individual rather than team performance, and little evidence of concern for and contributions to the community (e.g. Lipman-Blumen 2005; Padilla, Hogan and Kaiser 2007 ).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Perspectives on Maladministration in Education
Subtitle of host publicationTheories, Research and Critiques
EditorsEugenie A. Samier, Peter Milley
Place of Publication[S.I.]
Publication statusPublished - 7 May 2018


  • education
  • psychological effects
  • educational institutions


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