Does your profession attract psychopaths? Mine does.

15 Nov

A newly released book confirms what I’ve suspected for a very long time; I have worked with a bunch of psychopaths.

Kevin Dutton’s book, “The Wisdom of Psychopaths: What Saints, Spies, and Serial Killers Can Teach Us About Success,” looks at the world of the literal psychopath and the jobs that seem to attract and repel them.

Literal psychopaths don’t smack around co-workers or slay customers on aisle 10. Despite their lack of emotions and empathy, or their ability to identify with others, they are often very successful in the professional realm. Dutton points out that ”a number of psychopathic attributes [are] actually more common in business leaders than in so-called disturbed criminals — attributes such as superficial charm, egocentricity, persuasiveness, lack of empathy, independence, and focus.”

Here are the top ten professions that attract the empathy-challenged:

1. CEO
2. Lawyer
3. Media (Television/Radio)
4. Salesperson
5. Surgeon
6. Journalist
7. Police officer
8. Clergy person
9. Chef
10. Civil servant

Oh crap. As a public relations professional and journalist, I work with 20 percent of the professional world’s psychopaths.

This explains SOOO much.


4 Responses to “Does your profession attract psychopaths? Mine does.”

  1. Menda November 15, 2013 at 4:43 PM #

    I knew the industry I am in we are all kind of nuts!

  2. charleneaross November 15, 2013 at 3:22 PM #

    It’s interesting (and quite sad) that professions such as clergy, police officers and civil servants attract people who lack empathy.

    However it does make sense about surgeons – they probably perform their jobs much better if they focus on the mechanics of it rather than the person. (And it explains a lot about their lack of bedside manner!) 🙂

  3. Brigitte November 15, 2013 at 2:47 PM #

    This is not good news. At all. Thanks. Have a nice weekend.

    • Kim Keller November 15, 2013 at 3:04 PM #

      It is good news Now you know what you’re dealing with. 🙂 Forewarned is forearmed!

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