Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work

The term psychopath has been around since the nineteenth-century, but was popularized by psychiatrist Hervey Cleckley back in 1941,  on the classic book "The Mask of Sanity: An Attempt to Clarify Some Issues About the So-Called Psychopathic Personality. For Dr. Cleckley, the "psychopathic personality" was defined by a "relatively high-functioning, aggressively narcissistic, extraverted persona concealing an antisocial and latent psychotic core". The term seems to have been first applied people that seemed "to possess no sense of ethics or of the rights of other people". 

Currently researchers use the term “psychopath” to refer to more serious disorders linked to genetic traits that produce dangerous individuals, while using the term “sociopath” to refer to less dangerous people who are seen more as products of their environment. Using PCL-R description psychopaths are people with a “callous unconcern for the feelings of others”, what we ussually would say "coldheartedness people”. 

There are psychopaths everywhere; they are driven, focused and ussually have little remorse in their quest for success. Researchers Paul Babiak and Robert Hare have long studied psychopaths and together studied how psychopaths operate in corporations.

Results were surprising: they found that it is exactly the modern, open, more flexible corporate world - in which high risks can equal high profits - that attracts psychopaths. Many times they enter as rising stars and corporate saviors, but all too soon they are abusing the trust of colleagues, manipulating supervisors, and leaving the workplace in shambles.

Snakes Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work is a compelling book, with a scientifically look at how psychopaths work in the corporate environment, what kind of companies attract them, how they negotiate the hiring process, and how they function day by day. 

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