Psychopathic personality traits are associated with a lower occupational prestige

Psychopathic personality traits are associated with a lower occupational prestige ...

According to a new study called Personality and Individual Differences, having a psychopath appears to impede professional success. The findings also underscore the potential effects of psychopathy in the workplace.

According to research author Hedwig Eisenbarth, people with higher psychopathic traits would be ideal CEOs and successful because of their ability to ignore emotions, less empathy, and reward orientation.

We had previously investigated that hypothesis in another study, and found that there was some evidence that psychopathy might not be the case for psychopathy as a unitary construct; rather than fearless dominance, we found that only the fearless dominance aspect of those traits was linked to professional success.

Both aspects of psychopathy are shifting into two directions. We wanted to see if this can be replicated in a larger sample and if it would last for an additional year, according to Eisenbarth.

Researchers used longitudinal data from a nationally representative sample of 2,969 individuals. These data, which was collected as part of the New Zealand Attitudes and Values Study, included indicators of subjective job satisfaction and occupational prestige. Eisenbarth and her colleagues also used questions from the survey to assess three aspects of psychopathic personality: fearless dominance, self-centered impulsivity, and coldheartedness.

Increased fearless dominance was linked to greater job satisfaction and job security. Despite this, greater self-centered impulsivity was associated with reduced job satisfaction and job security. Moreover, both self-centered impulsivity and coldheartedness were linked to reduced occupational prestige.

Psychopathy is not a simple, unitary personality trait with clear connections to behaviors or outcomes, but in this case, being high on psychopathic traits is not a substitute for improved professional outcomes. In this case, individuals who are highly impulsive and highly psychopathic might actually have less success and individuals who are highly fearless, dominant and psychopathic might have greater success.

Researchers were measured for age, gender, educational level, and time in the current employment. Yet the study, like all research, contains several limitations.

Eisenbarth believes that this study is based only on a proxy measure for psychopathic traits, rather than on a specific and full-scale psychopathy questionnaire. Although the results are compatible with our previous research as well as other techniques, we must do so with more appropriate measures.

Psychopathic traits aren''t a big deal of the variability in professional success, thus there are other variables that might be more relevant than psychopathy. Next steps should possibly be explored further, what the mechanisms are, and how aspects of psychopathy effect peoples career pathways.

Even if I was given the difference in the measurements and the difference in the geographical location of the sample, I found matching results, with the effect on success also lasting for (at least) a year, Eisenbarth said. It does indeed demonstrate that psychopathy isn''t a good trait, in its whole picture, with combined impulsive and fearless dominant aspects.

Hedwig Eisenbarth, Claire M. Hart, and Tristan Keilor, both wrote the study, Aspects of psychopathic personality. Marc Wilson, Joseph Bulbulia, Chris G. Sibley, and Constantine Sedikides.

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