Is Upper Management Just As Susceptible To Drug and Alcohol Abuse?

onsite drug testing, employee drug testing, saliva drug testWhile a lot of time is spent on talking about drug and alcohol testing for your employees, they are not the only individuals susceptible to drug abuse and alcoholism. All members of your business must be tested regularly both pre- and post-employment. But, now that we are on the subject, how often do members of upper management abuse illegal substances?

The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that 70% of all drug abusers are employed, and that is not accounting for the alcoholics. [1] It is the responsibility of upper management to make sure that production costs are kept low and that business standards remain high. What has to happen in order for upper management to be held accountable? Accountability is the answer. Senior executives must be prepared to hold their coworkers accountable for their irresponsible behavior and poor role modeling techniques. If you are a member of the senior staff, that means that you have greater responsibility and accountability to your lower-level employees. You are in a position to make or break the business, individual jobs and lives, personal accountability and interaction between employees, and to harm a lot of people if your power is mismanaged. You cannot be their leader and be one of them at the same time, much like a parent cannot be a parent and a friend to their child at the same time. Your duties involve holding yourself to a higher standard, putting the value and health of the business before your own personal desires, and knowing that you are not just in charge of a collection of job titles, but human lives.

If you are a senior member of management and you can see sexual abuse or racism among your coworkers, would you not want to do something about it? Failing to report the disease of alcoholism or drug abuse is the same as failing to report an epidemic which needs to be quarantined. The health of your organization…your health…is at stake. If you do not, then you are selling yourself. If there was a job where you could sell yourself on the street for money, what would it be called?

In Responsibility, Ethics and Legitimacy of Corporations, Jacob Dahl Rendtorff describes how a duality of loyalty, on the one hand client accountability and on the other corporate brotherhood, can lead upper management to be in a bind and feel that they must choose between the richer, dark side and the more ethical, but poor, side. [2] Drug and alcohol testing on all levels of employment can make this decision less complicated and more beneficial for all employees. Contact CMM Technology today: +618-9204-2500.


1. Belew, Valerie. “Substance Abuse Prevention in the Workplace.” eHow . N.p., n.d. Web. 9 June 2011.

2. Rendtorff, Jacob Dahl. Responsibility, ethics, and legitimacy of corporations . Frederiksberg, Denmark: Copenhagen Business School Press ;, 2009. Print.

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