Think of a psychopath and more often than not you'll think of a serial killer operating in the dead of night through the pages of a Thomas Harris novel or on the screen of the latest Hollywood blockbuster.
But in actual fact, there's a strong likelihood that, in your own office, there are one or two individuals who would fall within the definition of a psychopath.
Generally speaking, 1 in 100 people have the characteristics of a psychopath and when it comes to business leaders that figure jumps to 1 in 25.
Psychiatrist Professor Renata Schoeman says certain traits of psychopaths can be particularly beneficial in the workplace.
They're strong, they're fearless, dominant and bold and that can help them get along in business.— Prof Renata Schoeman, Psychiatrist and Associate professor in leadership - Stellenbosch Business School
The problem, she says, is when the less desirable traits begin to present themselves.
With narcissistic people, it's indirect bullying tactics and their whole agenda is about forwarding their own agenda by using people.— Prof Renata Schoeman, Psychiatrist and Associate professor in leadership - Stellenbosch Business School
Or the darker traits of a psychopathic personality where you have a predatory drive for strategic conquest, there's domination, there's cruelty...and a lack of remorse.— Prof Renata Schoeman, Psychiatrist and Associate professor in leadership - Stellenbosch Business School
Listen to the full interview below:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : The tell-tale signs you're working with a psychopath