Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work

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HarperCollins, May 8, 2007 - Business & Economics - 352 pages
84 Reviews

Let's say you're about to hire somebody for a position in your company. Your corporation wants someone who's fearless, charismatic, and full of new ideas. Candidate X is charming, smart, and has all the right answers to your questions. Problem solved, right? Maybe not.

We'd like to think that if we met someone who was completely without conscience -- someone who was capable of doing anything at all if it served his or her purposes -- we would recognize it. In popular culture, the image of the psychopath is of someone like Hannibal Lecter or the BTK Killer. But in reality, many psychopaths just want money, or power, or fame, or simply a nice car. Where do these psychopaths go? Often, it's to the corporate world.

Researchers Paul Babiak and Robert Hare have long studied psychopaths. Hare, the author of Without Conscience, is a world-renowned expert on psychopathy, and Babiak is an industrial-organizational psychologist. Recently the two came together to study how psychopaths operate in corporations, and the results were surprising. They found that it's exactly the modern, open, more flexible corporate world, in which high risks can equal high profits, that attracts psychopaths. They may enter as rising stars and corporate saviors, but all too soon they're abusing the trust of colleagues, manipulating supervisors, and leaving the workplace in shambles.

Snakes in Suits is a compelling, frightening, and scientifically sound look at exactly how psychopaths work in the corporate environment: what kind of companies attract them, how they negotiate the hiring process, and how they function day by day. You'll learn how they apply their "instinctive" manipulation techniques -- assessing potential targets, controlling influential victims, and abandoning those no longer useful -- to business processes such as hiring, political command and control, and executive succession, all while hiding within the corporate culture. It's a must read for anyone in the business world, because whatever level you're at, you'll learn the subtle warning signs of psychopathic behavior and be able to protect yourself and your company -- before it's too late.

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There's some good advice, and interesting insight. - Goodreads
This book was hard to read to the end. - Goodreads
Good issues to be aware of, mixed writing. - Goodreads
The author has clearly not researched the topic much. - Goodreads
Disclaimer: I skimmed through this book for research. - Goodreads
The writing didn't grip me. - Goodreads

Review: Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work

User Review  - Rachel - Goodreads

A good and informative read but not gripping like The Sociopath Next Door or Without Conscience. Read full review

Review: Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work

User Review  - Vivian - Goodreads

Snakes in Suits reveals psychopaths' secrets, introduces the ways in which they manipulate and deceive, and helps listeners see through their games. It is a compelling, frightening, and scientifically ... Read full review

Contents

Who Are These People?
17
Act I Scene II Off and Running
31
Act II Scene I HailFellowWellMet
59
Copyright

6 other sections not shown

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About the author (2007)

Paul Babiak, Ph.D., is an industrial and organizational psychologist and president of HRBackOffice, an executive coaching and consulting firm specializing in management development and succession planning. His work has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, Harvard Business Review, and Fast Company. He lives in Dutchess County, New York, with his wife.

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