What is a martyr narcissist

Narcissism in leadership and why charismatics and narcissists are booming in politics ...

We offer you the following hypothesis, which we derive from the context already mentioned:

Our democracies are based on legally functioning bureaucracies. On an objective legal basis, strictly formalistic, functional, with set, formal and rational rules.
We move on this basis every day. We discuss and act according to factual expediency considerations: As free of emotion as possible, ideally without regard to the person or influence of personal motives, beyond any arbitrariness and unpredictability.
We are all committed to democracy, the rule of law and compliance with social rules.
And that's just as well! Because this is exactly how we guarantee our freedom, expression, fairness, health care, prosperity, even peace and stability ... and other advantages that you will surely even think of while reading.

However: That feels anything but "terrific" - quite "unexciting", some might even say ...
Individuals feel a vacuum of grandiosity, emotionality, longing for the "unprecedented", the extraordinary, liberation from routine and norms, "not taking the old conventions so seriously", making an exception to the rule ...
Exactly this vacuum is filled by charismatic - and unfortunately also narcissistic - personalities, accurate as "saviors": with the promise of experiencing grandiosity, the realization of great ideas, the overturning of established fetters and conventions. The need for charismatic personalities could therefore become greater the further the development towards a bureaucratic, clear, unemotional functionalism progresses.
And a second chain of effects could play a role: The "bright", positive charismatic differs from the "dark" narcissist primarily in the form of his power motive:
Both want power, but the “bright” leader wants to achieve something for the community, the organization, the society with his charismatic influence - a socialized power motive.
The dark narcissist, on the other hand, seeks power only for the fulfillment of his selfish, selfish goals. Things like compassion or empathy for others would only stand in the way of personal satisfaction ...
It would be only logical that in an increasingly individualistic society the “role model” of the dark narcissist gets caught up even better than the altruistic attitude of the charismatic.
This, too, could ultimately contribute to why more narcissists have recently come to crucial positions:
A society or organization in which the egoism of the individual blossoms - or in some areas even sets the tone.

How can you as a manager recognize narcissistic corporate cultures? Here we provide you with eight formative phenomena and behaviors that managers in these cultures show:

Please keep in mind, however, when reading that, of course, all eight never have to apply to one individual. As a rule, only some of the behaviors are clearly visible in narcissistic executives - although there are of course also "pure forms" :-)
One thing is decisive: What is the person's power motive - socialized, for the group (“light”) or personalized, selfish and egotistical (“dark”)?
1. The manager exaggerates their performance and talents:
These executives say they have been the "star of the show" in all life situations. With constant repetition, this becomes a reality for such people - they really believe it no matter what. Such executives always stage themselves, always highlight their outstanding achievements, often with exaggeration. You will look in vain for objective self-reflection in these executives.

2. The manager is a master manipulator:
These leaders use the weaknesses of others to get what they want and often “degrade” others (not just their contribution) in order to give their own personality more shine and strength. Motto: If I make the others smaller, I am even bigger. If they are "doing" others a favor, it is only so that they can later use it for their own purposes.

3. The manager does not recognize or accept the feelings of others:
For these executives, only their own emotions count. Other people's emotions flatten them to make them feel more worthy. Employees feel small and insignificant around these leaders.

4. The manager is never wrong:
These leaders always feel right and brag about achieving whatever they want - detached from rational and moral issues. When failures occur, these managers become aggressive and angry - always towards others, of course. You have never made mistakes yourself - they are terrific.

5. The manager demands admiration and must be the focus:
If these executives are no longer given their full attention, they quickly lose interest and suddenly look for other people. Like-minded people and admirers of these executives are encouraged and supported in their career development. You consciously encourage situations that place your admirers in a relationship of dependency on you. This secures your position and makes it much easier to get your own way when the time comes.

6. The manager uses other people as objects to achieve his own goals:
These leaders use everything, especially those around them, to meet their own needs, surpass others and achieve their own goals. This is how employees and colleagues become instrumentalized objects: there is praise and recognition for admirers and rejection up to “enmity” for critical questioning.

7. The manager needs attention:
These leaders accept no one better than themselves. They get angry when they lack attention and are jealous of anything that takes attention away from them. Competitive thinking and rivalry with everything and everyone is the order of the day. Critical thinkers quickly find themselves on the sidelines, are defamed in the worst case and are often made ridiculous.

8. The manager believes he is above the law and rules:
These executives believe they are above everything, are superior to others, and are allowed to do everything. Ethical and moral rules are shifting, own ideologies are being lived. Conventions and rules only apply to the others. Rules that you have drawn up yourself only apply until you override them yourself. You are never to blame and you will never make amends. If something's wrong, it's not their fault.

Our conclusion for this topic:

By recognizing the psychodynamic connections, it can be possible to escape from narcissistic entanglements prematurely. Perhaps it also leads to identifying narcissistic parts in ourselves. So we can actively choose not to fall on the “dark side” of this phenomenon. And also for the fact that we consciously use our influence, our power and charisma for the "bright" motives, in our own organization and with the people!

As a reading for even more details, we would be happy to provide you with the following tips:

  • "Dark Leadership" Narcissistic, Machiavellian and psychopathic leadership: essentials (short version) by Marco Furtner
  • “Narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy in organizations”, theories, methods and findings on the dark triad: by Kai Externbrink and Moritz Keil

With this in mind, we wish you a good handling of "Me, Myself and I" and support you in recognizing the "dark triad" of power and counteracting it.

We warmly greet you from the bright side of the tour,

Gabriele Ella and Bernhard Freudenstein