Leadership GuruOn paper, McGilton boasts impressive credentials. In a bio supplied for a leadership training seminar he gave in late 2005 -- when he was doubling as Force Protection's new CEO -- McGilton claimed that he had "owned approximately 50 companies and assisted more than 200 other companies" with his expert guidance. But former Force Protection executives question McGilton's track record and portray the vehicle maker as his only major client. Moreover, they doubt that McGilton's consulting firm should have landed even that business. With losses skyrocketing at Force Protection -- and auditors raising questions about the company's ability to survive -- McGilton arranged for Force Protection to spend large sums on his firm's consulting services. All told, regulatory filings show, Force Protection paid McGilton's firm more than $1 million for leadership training and computer technology during the CEO's first two years in office. Notably, the arrangement with McGilton's APT Leadership consulting firm seems to violate Force Protection's own code of ethics -- which cautions against any situation "that may involve, or even appear to involve," financial conflicts. "McGilton, an interested party, actually signed the contract," the former Force Protection executives claim in their lawsuit against the company. "McGilton wanted Force Protection to be responsible for all of the living expenses of the APT employees (and when challenged) unilaterally altered the contracts of the APT workers to provide them a salary of $1,000 per day as opposed to the previous salary of $15,000 per month" -- essentially doubling their pay.
Charts and DiagramsMeanwhile, an independent government review has exposed real shortcomings at the company. In a detailed report published this summer, the Office of the Inspector General revealed that Force Protection regularly missed production deadlines -- often under McGilton's watch -- despite generous help from the military. Ultimately, the OIG seemed to question whether Force Protection should have secured some of those lucrative contracts at all. The military "continued to award contracts for armored vehicles to FPI even though FPI did not perform as a responsible contractor and repeatedly failed to meet contractual delivery schedules for getting the vehicles to the theater," the OIG stated. "Had other contractors been provided with assistance, such as facilitization fees and relaxed delivery schedules, a number of other systems may have been available to help