Psychology is a big part of marketing and company culture. Understanding people helps you navigate how to manage them, and how to work with them. Much has been written about narcissist employees and employers, but it is the sociopath verging on narcissist that is really someone a company needs to watch out for. 
How to deal with sociopath employees

A case against ING had an employee say that she stole money based on revenge. The same can be said about people attacking their employers to their peers or to their friends, when they feel entitled to something that they feel their employer may not be giving them like a promotion, payrise, conference ticket or key client account. These things often cause an employee to feel bitter or vindictive and wanting to lash out at their employer or a person who may have received any of the things that they feel they are entitled to.

Some employees are naturally mentally more fragile than others, volatile and mean-spirited. People like this exist in all walks of life, but it is understanding what a person who has these traits looks like that really makes you wonder "what in the world are they doing?" because focusing so much on being mean-spirited or being volatile takes a lot of negative energy and it cannot be something that makes them happy long-term.

To a sociopath, what matters most is the sociopath. They tend to lack a conscience, making them extremely dangerous in the workplace and in life. Interestingly, a sociopath understands the difference between right and wrong, but they don't care. For instance, a sociopath is more likely to leave a company without notice, or take a day off to go shopping and ring in "sick", or repeatedly start late for work knowing that in this day and age, it is very hard for an employer to take someone to account. They will take a lunch break that is longer, or drink at lunch even though they know they will come back to the office half tanked. Still, as an employer, your hands are tied. You are dealing with a sociopath. Worse still, they find other weaker staff members to prey on and convince them to do the same.

In meetings if you dare to bring this to their attention (I wouldn't bother personally as it will come back to bite you as "they cannot do no wrong"), they will bring other people into it. This person said or did this, that person said this... better still, they will try and get you to react by trying to place fault on you because they took a lunch break that was longer, or decided to get intoxicated. It will always be someone else's fault.

Personally, things don't change. As charming as they might be, the dark side rears its head. That's why you need to wait six months before getting serious with someone, because while they are on their best behaviour, this ugly head may not be on show. Live with them and do one thing that they feel is not to their liking and all hell will break lose. You will see the sociopath come to life. This person said this. That person said that. You are wrong. Then they look for a sympathy vote; cry, say you made them "feel less than" or something similar.

Staying clear in your personal life is not how life runs its course. Asking them to seek help is important to them identifying what the problem is and hopefully when they feel themselves doing the typical traits of a sociopath, they pull themselves in line not wanting to lose someone they love.

In work, they will job hop. These people often say they work for themselves on their CV's or jump from one job to another. Sociopaths survive in some industries more than others where they can constantly change their work environment and the people they work with. It gives them the opportunity to always be the "new girl" or "new boy" in an office and be the centre of attention - which they love.

As an employer, always make sure you never have one-on-one conversations with a sociopath, and always document every meeting in detail. This is critical, because sociopaths can be very dangerous to not only culture but to a business.
Mellissah Smith is a serial entrepreneur and business leader with more than 20 years' experience in marketing.
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Mellissah Smith

Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert, author, writer, public speaker and technology innovator. Having worked with more than 300 companies across technology, medical device, professional services, manufacturing, logistics, finance and health industries, Mellissah has a well-established reputation as an experienced marketing professional with more than 20 years experience. As the founder and managing director of Marketing Eye, she has taken the company from startup to a multi-million dollar enterprise with offices in Australia and the US. Mellissah is also the Editor in Chief of Marketing Eye Magazine, a quarterly magazine that cover marketing, entrepreneurship, travel, health and wellbeing. #mellissah #marketingeye

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