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37 - Exposing Toxic Leadership from the Inside - My Journey as a Whistleblower with Gordon Graham
Episode 379th August 2023 • The Adaptive Executive • Greg Ballard
00:00:00 00:56:47

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In this episode, Greg speaks with Gordon Graham, author of "The Intrepid Brotherhood: Public Power, Corruption, and Whistleblowing." Gordon shares his experience as an IT professional at a public utility who witnessed unethical and toxic leadership practices. When he tried to speak up, he faced retaliation and was forced to become a whistleblower.

Key Topics Covered:

  • Gordon's career background in IT and experience in the public utility industry
  • The story of how a new executive joined the company with ambitions to become CEO and the chaos he created
  • Examples of unethical decisions made by this leader, including pushing out other executives and mishandling a major ERP implementation
  • Gordon's attempts to raise concerns and the retaliation he faced
  • His journey to becoming a whistleblower and fighting his wrongful termination
  • Characteristics of toxic leadership based on Gordon's experience and research
  • The importance of screening for dark triad traits in leaders and preventing toxic leadership


0:00 - Introduction to Gordon Graham and his background

5:30 - The new executive joins with ambitions to become CEO

10:00 - Unethical decisions made by the new leader

15:00 - Gordon tries to raise concerns and faces retaliation

20:00 - Becoming a whistleblower and fighting wrongful termination

25:00 - Toxic leadership traits - the dark triad

30:00 - How to prevent toxic leadership

Guest Info:

Gordon Graham is the author of "The Intrepid Brotherhood: Public Power, Corruption, and Whistleblowing." He has decades of experience in IT and as a whistleblower exposing unethical practices. His website:


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