Guy Bowling's Drug Addiction In The Workplace

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Drug addiction within the workplace is a prevalent and growing problem. This issue can affect leaders, followers, and everyone within an organization. The case we are addressing involves a high school principal with a pain killer addiction. In this essay we will explore the factors of abuse, consequences of abuse and bad leadership, and solutions that could have been used to prevent further damage to the school community. High school principal Guy Bowling was a well respected and highly merited individual. Due to several back surgeries, he was prescribed pain killers. These surgeries provided multiple high-end prescriptions, subsequently leading to an opioid addiction. Bowling was the leader of a 1,200 person student body with roughly 50-75…show more content…
He would come to school high on the painkillers which indefinitely affected his workplace leadership and behaviour. He would give unfair treatment and favor to certain students if he were high, while others suffered from his wrath if he had not taken his pills that day. It was a Dr.Jekyll and Mr. Hyde scenario, his daily demeanor changed frequently as a consequence of the addiction. This inconsistency weighed heavily on the faculty. He would give scrupulous teacher evaluations sober, yet the teachers would get poor reviews and be reprimanded unjustly if he had missed a pill. His erratic behaviour affected teachers abilities by keeping them on edge all day never knowing when his mood would change. Leadership Outcome Poor leadership was exemplified in this situation through many volatile actions. According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, the four main issues caused by drug abuse in the workplace are premature death/fatal accidents, injury and accident rates, absenteeism/extra sick leave, and loss of…show more content…
The principal showed signs of Machiavellian leadership by using rewards and punishment to shape behavior, focusing on individual power, and using intimidation and fear tactics in order to remain in power. For example, when he jumped on the construction equipment, he was showing initiative and attempting to push the project along. But the principal’s choice to take action in the construction site came from a selfish place of trying to complete the project at hand faster and ended in a bad situation that could have easily been avoided. His demeanor towards the students created a strained relationship between the student body and faculty through unnecessary punishment and intimidation tactics. Bowlings addiction took him as far as to pressure a non-tenured teacher to influence her husband, an intern at a Birmingham hospital, to illegally prescribe him more painkillers, according to an article published by the Arab Tribune (Arab Tribune, 2009). By creating an environment filled with fear and insecurity about the day to day happenings of the school, the principal lost his reputation of authority due to his erratic behavior. Addiction can take a heavy toll on the lives of those affected, and this problem has proven that the principals struggle ultimately cost him his leadership role in the high
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