Date of Conferral
John K. Schmidt
Presence of the Dark Triad traits of Machiavellianism, narcissism, and psychopathy in the workplace, especially among managers, has received increased attention due to the implications for organizations. One way to influence behavior in business organizations is through controlled interventions to change individual mind-sets. A review of the extant literature indicated that the relationship between Dark Triad traits and mind-set had not been sufficiently examined. A quantitative study was conducted to examine whether a manager's Dark Triad traits predict their mindset. To explore this relationship, a sample of 153 managers' responses was collected online. The Short Dark Triad measure was used to assess participants' Machiavellianism, narcissism, and psychopathy and the Implicit Theory Measure was used to assess mind-set. Regression showed that only Machiavellianism predicts mind-set, accounting for 7% of the variance in mind-set as the criterion variable. The findings indicate that the relationship between Dark Triad traits and mind-set is weaker than a review of the extant psychological literature might suggest. Additionally, this study found that the Dark Triad traits are significantly negatively correlated with manager age, which might provide a new direction for further research. Further research on how and why Dark Triad traits tend to decline with age is recommended. The present study suggests that a better understanding of the relationship between the Dark Triad traits and mind-set and the knowledge that controlled interventions aimed at promoting a growth mind-set are most likely not a useful tool to mitigate the level of Dark Triad psychological traits of managers in business organizations.