Here’s something you’ve probably never considered before: dark personalities, such as the psychopath, narcissist, and the Machiavellian, are drawn to certain career paths.

The first thing I would like to stress is that choosing a career type does not automatically place you in the dark triad of personality types. However, these personality types do fare better in particular career fields.

And when you try to understand the differences between the three, you might start adding personality type terms like sociopaths as well. It can get confusing, so let me try to break it down just a bit.

A sociopath is thought to be a subconstruct of the psychopath. Sometimes it’s explained that the psychopath is born that way and the sociopath is created over time.

  • The psychopathic personality is deceptive, superficially charming, antisocial, takes risks, callous, remorseless, and lacks a conscience.
  • The Machiavellian personality is also deceptive, plus they are cynical, emotionally detached, intelligent, immoral, and driven by selfish aspirations.
  • The narcissist is not only deceitful but downright duplicitous. They are also arrogant, attention-seeking, hypersensitive to criticism, boastful, uncompromising, controlling, entitled, and prone to exaggeration.

All three can be manipulative and lack empathy.

What jobs attract these dark personalities

Now that we have that out of the way, we can take a look at the career paths enjoyed by these personalities. In a study at the Western Ontario University, over 800 participants answered questions about their interests in various vocations. These career choices were assessed against the traits of the dark triad. Here’s what was found:

1. Artists (narcissists)

Not all artists are narcissists, but narcissists do thrive in artistic career fields. The main reason this applies is that artistic endeavors bring attention. Considering narcissistic personalities thrive on attention and promote their own arrogance, they will be drawn to things like painting, writing, constructing, and music.

Having the ability to say, “Hey, I wrote that”, or “I painted that”, gives them a spotlight for a moment. And if the narcissist wishes to keep the influx of attention flowing, they will be actively creative in high volumes.

2. The entertainment industry (narcissists)

The entertainment industry is full of narcissistic personalities. If you’ve watched the news anytime lately, I’m sure you’ve seen plenty of toxic behavior. With a high level of attention-seeking reserves, the entertainment industry brings copious amounts of applause and recognition. But mind you, not all entertainers are narcissists.

With this high level of attention, the narcissist is fed. And considering most of these personalities are never truly satisfied, the entertainment industry can provide endless avenues for gaining attention. And it’s also an industry riddled with deception. A narcissist should fit right in.

3. Marketing (narcissists)

Another career field that attracts narcissists is the marketing field. With marketing, this personality type gets plenty of chances to be seen by the public and adored as well. Marketing strategies include having a bold presence, a brand, and plenty of communication in networking ventures.

Although the narcissistic personality is toxic on various levels, it’s also a personality that can communicate quite well. Regardless of the truthfulness of this communication, narcissists are drawn to marketing products and more so, themselves.

And yet, some marketing managers and the like are nowhere near narcissistic. So, let’s keep an open mind.

4. Business (Machiavellian)

Business careers attract the Machiavellian personality and not just the lower rungs of the business ladder. Leadership positions are more attractive to this personality in that it provides them with the high status they desire so much. Unlike narcissists, however, they aren’t as concerned with what people think as much as how they are treated.

The Machiavellian with the colder personality is more concerned with the facts of the position and usually stays emotionally detached from situations. In the business sector, this is easily done.

In leadership, for example, there is little interaction between the Machiavellian and those he sees as beneath them. And like I said before, not all businessmen are Machiavellians, however, some of the most successful ones may have a few of these traits mentioned with the personality type.

5. Sales (Machiavellian)

When driven by selfish desires, the Machiavellian can have it all. In sales, this personality utilizes a cold calculated strategy to convince others to buy products. Although they do not set out to lie for attention, they use questionable tactics for their personal success.

Salesmen aren’t all Machiavellians, however, Machiavellians do quite well in sales by having little moral code to operate.

6. Politics (Machiavellian)

And the same goes with politics. To get elected to a position, the Machiavellians will use all their talents, cynical behaviors, and selfish aspirations to land a position. Whether it’s presidential or simply being elected as a member of a board, politicians are many times also Machiavellians. Then again, some of them are not.

7. Lawyers (psychopaths)

Some of the more ruthless careers are attractive to psychopaths. And the reason for this is pretty simple. A lawyer is hired to do whatever they must to win a case. A psychopath will also do whatever they must to receive their desired reward, whatever that may be.

The psychopathic personality doesn’t have the same boundaries as most of us do. They are quick to be deceptive and lack a conscience in doing so. This type of behavior works well in legal careers, as they are willing to do questionable things, not just for their own gain, but sometimes just for the fun of it.

And no, not all lawyers are psychopaths. Some non-psychopaths have a difficult time in certain ethical areas of their job.

8. Police Officers (psychopaths)

Not all police officers are corrupt. I wanted to make that clear before I continue.

However, the corrupt ones are often psychopathic personalities. The absolute thrill of working in law enforcement provides the psychopath with unimaginable excitement. And considering, in some circumstances, police officers can work around the law, the psychopath loves this.

Being a police officer is also attractive to the psychopath because they can easily be deceptive at crime scenes and during the time, they have alone patrolling areas of their location. They can be charming and antisocial at the same time.

And again, not all cops are like this. Some police officers are reputable individuals.

9. Engineering (psychopaths)

The psychopath can also thrive in more lowkey career fields like engineering. Some jobs in this field require adventurous assignments and duties that thrill the psychopath. And since psychopathic personalities love feeling powerful while antisocial, this job works well at fulfilling both those needs.

Engineering is a highly respected field of study. Many non-psychopaths are highly successful in this area. It stands to reason that psychopaths would want a bit of that success for themselves.

Careers for the dark triad

These career paths are by no means all the interests held by dark personalities. There are many other fields of study that draw the attention of the psychopath, the narcissist, and the Machiavellian. However, let’s not forget that anyone can enjoy these careers and not fall into the dark triad category. It’s just something you might notice.

Be blessed and chase your own dreams today, despite their reputations.

References:

  1. https://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2793&context=soss_research
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0092656602005056
  3. https://www.psychologytoday.com

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