David Clark parted company with Shetland Council in February
The way Shetland Islands Council recruited and paid off its controversial chief executive has been heavily criticised by a watchdog.
The decision to give David Clark a reported £250,000 pay-off caused local uproar earlier this year.
In a draft report to be published next week - but leaked to BBC Scotland - Audit Scotland said it found little evidence of leadership at the council.
The report criticises the process for recruitment and selection.
And it found that when Mr Clark started work there was no formal process in place to appraise and manage his performance.
On his reported pay-off, the financial watchdog said it was of serious concern that a significant amount of public money had been spent to settle the case.
The local authority announced in February that Mr Clark, who became its chief last June, was leaving by "mutual agreement".
Protesters angered by the pay-off had gathered in Lerwick in the wake of the news.