Working papers

The Psychopath in the C-suite (2012)

Manfred Kets de Vries

"Identifying and dealing with SOBs"

Meet the SOB—Seductive Operational Bully—or psychopath “lite.” SOBs don’t usually end up in jail or psychiatric hospital but they do thrive in an organisational setting. SOBs can be found wherever power, status, or money is at stake. Outwardly normal, apparently successful and charming, their inner lack of empathy, shame, guilt, or remorse, has serious interpersonal repercussions, and can destroy organisations. This working paper explores ways of identifying and dealing with SOBs—Seductive Operational Bully—from an organisational and individual perspective, and recommends a clinical orientation to organisational diagnosis and intervention.

INSEAD Working Paper, 2012

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