St. John Ambulance is a volunteer organization providing community based first aid services. It is led by uniformed members and an emergency medical response for everyday civil emergencies. It has a tradition of providing care for the sick in their homes. The organization is humanitarian, non-political and non-profit. I worked in the organization for two years as a volunteer before enrolling in college. I learned a lot about the organization and listened to other volunteers who have been in the organization for a long time. Poor leadership and poor decision making were evident in the regional offices that I worked for the two years. In fact, the organization has great chances of generating money, but the poor leadership and poor decision making create barriers.
Mr. Fredrick is the executive officer at St. John regional offices in western Kenya. He is the head of all the staffs and volunteers in this region. Unfortunately, Fredrick is a toxic leader who has caused the organization great harm and negative reputation. He makes decisions on his own without involving other regional staffs. Additionally, he does not discuss the decisions he has made with employees and volunteers in the organization. Toxic leadership is the leadership perspectives that harm people and the company. It does this through discouragement of enthusiasm, autonomy, creativity and innovative expressions.
Mr. Fredrick does this via over-control. He dperceives leadership as existence in control. In this regional office, individuals are rewarded for assenting with the authority, and they are punished for thinking alternatively. In the context of toxic leadership ecology, “yes” people are usually rewarded and are endorsed to leadership responsibilities, whilst people who employ critical thinking are kept away from positions of influence and decision making. The executive officer has caused a huge turnover rate, a decrease in productivity, interdepartmental conflict and less innovation. Though every situation is different, there are triple downstream results of leading by control and power. To start with, there is the stifling of inventiveness. By tightly regulation of the projects, Fredrick effectively hindered people from rational argument and thinking outside the box.
He just wanted robotic employees to carry out his instructions, his vision. The second result is the lack of exchange of communication. By isolating individuals and strictly regulating information, Fredrick made his employees less productive, increased their desperation level, and encouraged suspicion. Third, when suspicion increases, relationships are unlikely to establish. Therefore, toxic leadership in St. John Ambulance western region has challenges in regards to productivity. Once the toxic leadership was applied into this organization, the productivity went down.
St. John Ambulance has had a chain of poor leadership in this region. According to the volunteers who have worked in the organization, they have had poor leaders in the past two decades. Therefore, Mr. Fredrick had poor role models. Since he was mentored by the toxic leaders, he functions under a defective definition of leadership. He wants to have control over everything, not realizing that the over-controlling makes harmful impacts. He acquires a certain degree of ego satisfaction from over-controlling. Ultimately, Fredrick has unresolved psychological matters like fear of failure, fear of the unknown, mistrust of people, lack of confidence, extreme overconfidence or feelings of inadequacy, which he evades by exercising toxic administration.
The outcome is that the poor leadership at St. John does not appreciate the exclusivity of being a human, and this view affetc the way they treat people who work for them. Human beings remain to be complex social beings and have intrinsic value that drives far beyond salary they receive and the position they grasp. They are productive, and their satisfaction degree is higher, when they are perceived as people that they are, when they form relationships, exercise their creativity and communicate.
Mr. Fredrick views people as robots; it is defined by whichever work the leader wants them to do. Therefore, toxic leader is dealing with few people. People learn from this, and respond by being only partly there, in other arguments, they promise to function and associate with the company as closely as possible. Over the period, they are likely to oversee their function as the only job. By attempting to regulate every element of an individual, the toxic leader controls less of the individual and has fewer controls.
In addition to lowering the commitment of the employees, poor leadership has made systemic damage to the organization. In St. John Ambulance western region, employees and volunteers have two options: leave or conform. Those who endure will experience reduced expectations. Some becomes aware that the condition is less than the notion; these people might keep hoping that the condition will alter, or become of the viewpoint that this is the right period to leave. However, they may start viewing toxic leaderships as normality and willingly conform. These will be the upcoming generation of toxic leadership.
Individuals like this have the same impacts on an organization. On the outer phase, things seem normal; but there is a serious trouble under the surface. Additionally, the organization faces uncommon stresses, and a depressed economy, for example, more demands are being put on workforces.
The first step is the establishment of systematic accountability forums. The organization should hold regular accountability forums or meetings. Every member of the organization should attend the forum and show his/her accountability in office. In this case, Mr. Fredrick and other leaders will be careful when making decisions and taking actions in their departments. The leaders should be questioned on every initiative and the reason behind every potential failure. This will make them reason effectively and avoid any action that can lead to questioning. Accountability forums should discuss positive and negative outcomes of initiatives, and the process in which the decisions were made and actions taken in every step. Pressures and sources of information in the initiative should be examined in public. The forum helps leaders to be responsible for their actions. Leaders who are unable to account on their actions or are reluctant to do so are on their way to toxic leadership and should be warned.
The organization should set a particular time during which a leader should be in power. Therefore, the leaders will remain responsible for a particular period, and then leave office for others to rule. A leader is effective in few years with his strategies working out as expected. However, the strategies do not work forever. In this case, it is important to change leadership and put another leader in position for him to apply his strategies.