Once A Bully……….

by | Jul 25, 2023

I’ve often wondered if the antagonist in my book “The Intrepid Brotherhood” was capable of change. I’ve also been asked that question by most of the podcast hosts I have interviewed with. I think it is natural to wonder if toxic leaders are “fixable”. The question I get most often is “do you think he changed after he was chased out of your former company ……… do you think he learned anything”?

I have read four books on toxic leaders recently, either in preparation for writing my own or afterward to try to answer the plethora of questions I have about that particular mentality. Every one of those authors reaches the conclusion that there is no “fix” for them. Once a bully, always a bully.

My own clumsy intervention attempt with the particular toxic leader that is the subject of my book probably only fed the psychosis that drives individuals like him. Jean Lipman-Blumen says “their enormous egos blind these leaders to the shortcomings of their own character and thus limit their capacity for self-renewal”.1

Next time we’ll talk about the recognizable conditions and turmoil that these egos typically create.

Stay Courageous,


1The Allure of Toxic Leaders, Jean Lipman-Blumen, Oxford University Press 2005