Current facets (Pre-Master)

This is why we need a new Sally Yates now

This is why we need a new Sally Yates now

For top executives a bit of narcissism is essential to give good leadership, but they need opposing forces to keep them balanced, says Dr. Antoinette Rijsenbilt. What about President Trump? Is he a narcissist, or maybe even a psychopath?

Rijsenbilt: 'The term psychopath is removed from the DSM-5, so I would certainly not like to call President Trump a psychopath. One even must be careful with using the lable narcissist, you should look at all tests and features first. Also, you can't compare him to John Doe'. Important in his case is that opposing forces are in close proximity. So even if part of his staff resigns (or gets dismissed) there's no problem, as long as they get replaced'. Well, in that case: let's hope a new Sally Yates steps up soon!

Rijsenbilt earned her PhD at Erasmus University Rotterdam in 2011 on the subject of CEO narcissism. Narcissism is, in severe form, a personality disorder. People often show a great desire for power and recognition. They seem to be very confident, but their behaviour actually compensates for their low self-esteem. She used fifteen objective criteria to measure narcissism of top executives, such as salary level, the desire for publicity and the size of their picture in the annual report.

The disadvantage of narcissists at the top of a company is that they often ascribe enormous salaries, commit fraud and suffer less contradiction of fellow executives. Ultimately that's detrimental to a company. In her thesis Rijsenbilt advocates testing top executives on narcissism and establishing research in a ‘corporate governance code’.