November 29; Those Doing Business Must Have A Conscience
MANAGEMENT BY THE BOOK:
365 Daily Bible Verse &
One-Minute Management Lessons For The Busy Faithful

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29 November

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood,
but against the rulers, against the authorities,
against the powers of this dark world and
against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Ephesians 6:12

Those Doing Business Must Have A Conscience

Psycho

Are you charming, intelligent, adventurous, aggressive, impulsive? Do you get bored easily and like to live life on the edge? If you would like to make some easy money by participating in a confidential interview, please call to set up an appointment.*

She was indeed charming. I was about to promote her when she bumped into Buck, a company employee, at a large company event. Buck is not all that much to look at. She probably thought he was an aging bus-boy; a part of the resort’s wait staff. She treated him rudely. She was aggressive and impulsive.

Buck would overhear her bragging about her good-works to co-workers.
“The odd thing was that they loved her,” Buck said. “There was something not right – something unpredictable about her.”
Buck had an outsider’s gut reaction to my candidate.

She was a sociopath.

***

Your Business Professor has spent a number of decades in the armed services, government, start-ups, billion dollar conglomerates, non-profits, academia and consulting. It suddenly seemed to me that I had crossed work-paths with too many empathy-free confidence persons—con men.

I was worried until Martha Stout, Ph.D. reminded me in her book, The Sociopath Next Door that four percent of the population is sociopathic. One person in 24 is a danger. These abnormal grifters are all around us.

Goodness, this means I may have one in every classroom of 30 students.

Professors Paul Babiak and Robert Hare warn us in Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work, that “psychopathy is not mental illness; it is a personality disorder,” (Babiak, 2009),

[D]escribed by the personality traits and behaviors…without conscience and incapable of empathy, guilt, or loyalty to anyone but themselves.


Sociopathy is not a formal psychiatric condition. It refers to patterns of attitudes and behaviors that are considered antisocial and criminal by society at large, but are seen as normal or necessary by the subculture or social environment in which they developed.


Sociopaths may have a well-developed conscience and a normal capacity for empathy, guilt, and loyalty, but their sense of right and wrong is based on the norms and expectations of their subculture or group.

And these were the superstars I was attempting to hire and promote,

[S]ome companies quite innocently recruit individuals with psychopathic tendencies because some hiring managers may mistakenly attribute “leadership” labels to what are, in actuality, psychopathic behaviors.


For example, taking charge, making decisions, and getting others to do what you want are classic features of leadership and management, yet they can also be well-packaged forms of coercion, domination, and manipulation. (Babiak, 2009).

Darn.

So how does the Alert Manager identify and avoid these entitled, shameless parasites? Babiak and Hare suggest one red warning flag is the inability to form or function in a team. These narcissists are notorious liars who are unable to collaborate. They will jump the chain of command and jump away from actual work.

Dr. Stout also tells us that the sociopath will elicit pity. Something real men would never want. Would John Wayne want to be pitied? Sociopaths have the ability to cry out of one eye…

***

Buck was not sure that I should promote the likeable, charming woman. We learned that Buck had an unusual perspective: The woman did not know Buck was my boss’s boss. I took his concerns seriously (he sets my priorities, of course) and had her take a “routine” aptitude test.

Her results came back with three qualifying paragraphs that said that the candidate would be a “disruptive influence”. Carefully worded, non-clinical translation: she was a sociopath or worse.

When I told her (gently, gently) that I would not be promoting her, she told me about the death of her grandmother and how mean people were to her in this awful period in her broken life–what with her broken car and that house fire and her near miss with cancer. She then broke down crying. I almost felt sorry for her.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6:12

###

*Do not call me. Maybe contact Dr. Hare? This is an actual advertisement to lure psychopaths in for a clinical study. Babiak, Paul; Hare, Robert D. (2009-10-13). Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work (p. 241). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

Babiak, Paul; Hare, Robert D. (2009-10-13). Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work (p. 216). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

Babiak, Paul; Hare, Robert D. (2009-10-13). Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work (p. 19). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

Babiak, Paul; Hare, Robert D. (2009-10-13). Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work . HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

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