We want to share one of the most popular blogs from our sister company, InclusIQ Institute, with you. If you’re ready to develop inclusive leadership in your organisation, you’ll benefit from our monthly bulletin InclusIQ Illustrated.
We routinely work with clients who ask how to manage manipulative bosses or colleagues. There are often ways to get people onside, but depending on the evidence they have, the truth is that if you are working with a psychopath, they are unlikely to change.
At a distance, these people can be fascinating to observe – which is why they are often portrayed in films and books. Think Gordon Gekko of Wall Street or ‘Talented Mr. Ripley’. However, to avoid them scuppering your career, it’s best to leave the situation as quickly as you can. Things won’t get better and you’ll have difficulty progressing. In fact, the higher you go, the more likely you are to find them! A study by Babiak in 2010 entitled ‘Corporate psychopathy: talking the walk’ published in Behavioural Science and Law showed senior American executives are four times more likely than the general US population (4% vs 1%) to be classified as subclinical psychopaths. So how can you tell if your boss is just tough or if you work with a subclinical psychopath? Do you see several of the following traits:
- Superficial charm
- Repeated lying
- Lack of remorse
- Superficial emotions
- Lack of empathy
- Failure to accept responsibility