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How Can Anyone Be Like That? – Systematising Destructive and Ineffective Leadership

Destructive Leadership and Management Hypocrisy

ISBN: 978-1-80043-181-2, eISBN: 978-1-80043-180-5

Publication date: 8 July 2021


Research has overwhelmingly focused on the positive side of leadership in the past. However, research into negative aspects of leadership is picking up pace. This chapter will provide an overview of two prominent aspects of negative leadership, namely, abusive supervision and laissez-faire leadership. Research has shown that both types of leadership have significant negative consequences both for organisations as a whole as well as individual followers. Examples include lower job satisfaction, stress, as well as lowered performances and a higher likelihood of counter-productive work behaviour. Both abusive supervision and laissez-faire researchers acknowledge that these leadership styles take effect through the perception of followers. That is, they consider that the same behaviour can be interpreted differently by different followers and will, hence, lead to different follower-related outcomes. Abusive supervision and laissez-faire are, however, very different in terms of the actual leader behaviours described. While abusive supervision is a style that is actively destructive, laissez-faire is destructive via lack of support for followers' goal achievement. We end the chapter with an outlook for future research, notably an attempt to systematise future research into destructive leadership with respect to the different forms it can take.



Schilling, J. and Schyns, B. (2021), "How Can Anyone Be Like That? – Systematising Destructive and Ineffective Leadership", Camgöz, S.M. and Ekmekci, Ö.T. (Ed.) Destructive Leadership and Management Hypocrisy, Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 21-34.



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