Is Your Boss a Psychopath?
I’ve had my fair share of crazy bosses. They haven’t all been terrible, but more often than not, they’ve been a little… off. I know for a fact that one of my first bosses ever was at least a meth addict. She used to reassure me that if I ever had a problem with a customer, she’d back me up with a pack of vicious Dobermans and a bag of bricks.
My other bosses weren’t quite as out of their minds, but they certainly lacked empathy toward employees and tended to be overly fake with clients. I usually just shrugged off their behavior, figuring that times are tough and bosses have to be more uptight to improve business. Well, it turns out there’s a very good chance my bosses were actually psychopaths.
Jon Ronson, author of the new novel, The Psychopath Test, has shed some light on the unfairness of the corporate world. He has also scared the hell out of me. According to his research, true psychopaths are all around us (about 1 in 100 people are a psychopath), and the higher up the corporate ladder you look, the more prevalent they are.
Unfortunately, the ruthless, guilt-free qualities that create powerful CEOs, also create crazies.
Now, I have not yet read this book, but I did see the movie, Men Who Stare at Goats, which is based on Ronson’s novel of the same name. That makes me a certified Jon Ronson expert, and I think he is really on to something with this psychopath thing.
So, is your boss a psychopath? You can see the basic checklist here.