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martes, 15 de noviembre de 2011



A still non-endangered species inside MULTINATIONAL companies.  He’s part of the wildlife of those companies due to their structures).

I’ve been working for 17 years in different multinational pharmaceutical companies and I’ve cyclically found this specific profile of executive; I call it  THE TOXIC EXECUTIVE.
I understand that is the same structure of this kind of organizations which naturally fosters either the creation or the integration of this kind of executive. He sees the results inside the company only SHORT-TERM, compromising competitiveness in the short and long term (his endpoint is the bonus and he doesn’t care at all about how to reach it).
He’s so afraid to loose his job… he knows that his position is clearly above his possibilities, and he’ll do no matter what (lies, threats, pretending, etc…) to preserve it, not even paying attention to the great insecurity he creates in his own subordinates. In his own he knows that the odds to find a similar job are quite low, and that’s why he lives daydreaming  a permanent nightmare. This kind of executive only cares about his personal interest instead of those of the company.

He lives in permanent fear, and that means that as soon as he perceives a minimum criticism to his job, he immediately overreacts being aggressive against the person who made the criticism (fear is free). Soon, the remaining subordinates learn that the criticism is not welcomed here (that’s the ideal environment for the raising of the mediocre…). His lack of leadership and motivation skills will be supplanted by a climate full of fear and aggressiveness to hide his deficiencies.

  • HUMAN RESOURCES (Subordinates)
He’ll display a complete lack of empathy to his subordinates, causing a chronic discomfort to them. He won’t share their points of view and don’t even care about them (no matter if they’re right or wrong). He’ll try to stop their continuous education efforts, not to be overshadowed or eclipsed (i.e., anything they could do!).  That “character” likes to be surrounded by incompetent people. Those professionals who emanate energy, good performance skills and leadership will never be “the chosen ones”.  In his own he thinks that being surrounded by mediocrity will make him shine…

 He deeply fears the subordinate who could have a charismatic profile; that’s the worst thing that can happen to his professional career, well, that and loosing his job…All this together will promote a toxic working climate, with dreadful conditions triggering  the most gifted people out of the company. When this translates into the results achieved (and sooner than later this will come…) it will always be other people’s fault, never assuming his responsibility (that could make him weaker).
The customers will feel uncomfortable, because this executive “outsources” his fears, deficiencies and lack of personality. Besides, as foretold, his abcense of empathy makes his relationship with the customer forced and false, without freshness, spreading and worsening the customer-company commitment. Customers like to be bolstered, strengthened by the brand values (trustfulness, prestige, leadership, etc…), and that’s something the Toxic Executive could never stand for, his “communication skills” (gestures, behavior, etc…) translate exactly the opposite.

This Executive’s profile derives no benefit at all to the company, but definitely contributes to the following  penalties:

He  triggers the bad results in the company . In fact, the company looses competitiveness in the short- and long-term, although he could reach little success in the short run. He only works on a carpe diem basis, don’t ask for more, he could’nt go further because of his shortcomings and miopya.

Loss of gifted people that cannot find a positive ground to grow up in the company in this climate and which will never trust this kind of boss. The subordinates are not supported, specially those who could have synergies with the company’s interests.

The brand values could be lost, because the customer will perceive the toxic executive’s shortcomings instead.

He doesn’t feel that Corporate Social Responsibility is one of his personal endpoints so he’s not going to definitely implement the measures addressed to this goal .

His subordinates will never trust him and spend the whole day paying attention to him and not to their tasks and commitments.  That will trigger an apparent lack of competitiveness.

By Octavio Ignacio Ruiz Ruiz  Email: oirmab@gmail.com

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