Do You Identify with the Aggressor?

  • Manfred F. R. Kets de Vries


Everyone was scared of Derek, a senior VP in an engineering firm. His temper tantrums were legendary. When he felt crossed, he would publicly castigate whoever got in his way. His tendency toward extreme micro-management made him insufferable. And if this behaviour wasn’t enough, he kept taking credit for other people’s work, which created huge resentment. Unsurprisingly, given his leadership style, his subordinates were perpetually on edge, always wondering when it would be their turn to be his target. Derek’s toxic behaviour pervaded the whole company and had a seriously negative impact on morale.


  1. Milgram, S. (1974). Obedience to Authority: An Experimental View. New York: Harper Perennial.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Manfred F. R. Kets de Vries
    • 1
  1. 1.INSEADFontainebleauFrance

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