Implications of Narcissistic Personality Disorder on Organizational Resilience

  • Ronald Laurids BoringEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 1204)


In the Fifth Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5) of the American Psychiatric Association, narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by having feelings of self-importance, seeking for admiration, and lacking empathy. These traits map well into qualities of leadership such as having vision, having high achievement, and being able to make hard decisions. Unfortunately, narcissism often carries with it a number of negative traits such as manipulation or subversion of individuals, ethical lapses, and a need for constant change. On an organizational level, these traits may serve to undermine workers and the workplace, causing considerable damage in their wake and leaving personnel feeling helpless to intervene. This paper reviews an anonymized organizational case study of narcissistic personality disorder at a university. The dysfunction caused by a narcissistic leader directly led to the collapse of a program at the university, unusually high levels of attrition, and a diminished institutional reputation. This paper considers the implications of opportunistic leadership in eroding organizational resilience. Current research models focus on many of the factors that may erode organizational resilience, but they overlook the internal threat posed by narcissistic leaders. This paper reviews opportunities to consider narcissism as a causal factor in organizational resilience and human reliability analysis.


Organizational resilience Narcissistic personality disorder Leadership Human reliability analysis 


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Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Idaho National LaboratoryIdaho FallsUSA

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