Sociological Perspective of Narcissism in Leadership Positions

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In this article, “Power, Status and Expectation: How Narcissism Manifests Among Women CEOs”, Alicia Ingersoll describes that companies have witnessed renewed pressure to appoint more ethical leaders who will steer clear of scandal. She points out that firms will appoint leaders who will govern in ways that are accountable, transparent and that limit risks. Ingersoll points out that some firms have sought out to better understand the personality characteristic of ethical leaders who will govern responsibly. She also explains that organizations have benefited by appointing women to executive roles. She states “Therefore, deriving from these concerns a new consensus has emerged: narcissistic leaders are bad and women leaders are good for firms” (Ingersoll). These narcissistic leaders can be harmful to the health of the organizations they lead.

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Alicia writes that the personality of top leaders will drive organizational outcomes because such leaders will exert influence over firm strategy, policy and practice. As told this perspective warrants attention to CEO personality as a measure of key influence. A narcissistic CEO believes that their superior personal abilities will always positively affect the outcome of business initiatives. Also, narcissistic CEOs use their authority to control organizational strategies for their personal interests. Gender does not always have a big factor because it is equally possible to happen at any work place but today society and how we perceive things men typically overpower women.

The sociology perspective is that while many studies generalize findings to all CEOs, most research focuses largely on men CEOs simply because most CEOs are typically men. Men CEOs are viewed as the more fit role to lead organizations than women because of there firm and aggressive behavior. Women are viewed as the person who has more empathy and will not lead aggressively compared to men. “Although women face significant limitations on their ability to display typical leadership qualities such as dominance, competitiveness and assertiveness, women’s path to top leadership is constrained and distinct from the path that men leaders follow” (Ingersoll). I believe certain business look towards men more because of those strong traits they may have and appoint men as CEO instead of women.

We as a society view most men being the leaders to almost everything but women tend to be better leaders then men. For example: Women CEOs are more similar to women in general in that they are less narcissistic than men. But women leaders are expected to act according to the norms of femininity with the warmth and compassion. Another example: Narcissistic women CEOs will engage in less risk-taking than narcissistic men CEOs. Also, Women CEOs will engage in fewer questionable behaviors than men CEOs. Therefore, women tend to have more empathy/sympathy towards work ethic as society perceives them to while men are perceived aggressive and assertive in their work ethic.

Furthermore, the sociology perspective in this article is that women are perceived the lesser and men are perceived of the more strong and the risk-taker. I believe that society perceives women this way because it has been this way since the beginning. Men has always been looked at as the leaders and the women as soft individuals. Although men have always been perceived as the leaders it has been changing overtime. Women have been starting to step up to the top of the bar and taking the leadership roles because of their certain characteristics and good qualities. Finally, more women are taking the leadership role because we are starting to realize the success outcomes that come from woman being CEOs.

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