The Three Levels Of Fear. Part Three: Fear And The Organisation

This is the third of a three part series of articles that examines previous research on the topic of fear.  This article looks at how fear can develop and spread in organisations.

Fear And The Organisation:

From the individual to the executive team, fear and dysfunction can spread out into the organisation. 

Goldman (2008) describes how “complex webs of organizational dysfunction are frequently an outgrowth of mild, unchecked toxicity in the workplace.” 

Padilla, Hogan and Kaiser (2007) when describing stable systems note, “but destructive leaders and colluding followers are sometimes able to take over.” 

And if these dysfunctions become ingrained companies can fail, with reasons given such as “no transparency”, “high level of bureaucracy” and “the management did not want to adapt” (Lymbersky, 2014).

All these internal issues might be driven by fears leading to defensive behaviours that led to organisation-wide dysfunctions. 

Unhealthy organisational cultures then develop.

(Article reference details available on request)

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