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Do Narcissists Have Better Ideas?

Not really, however it seems like they are better at persuasion. New experiments show, narcissists are great at convincing others that their ideas are creative even though they’re just average. If you’re thinking this is justification to rid yourself of that narcissistic co-worker, think again. The researchers also discovered that groups with a handful of narcissists come up with better ideas than those with none.

Psychologists Jack Goncalo and Sharon Kim of Cornell University and Francis Flynn of Stanford University paired up 76 college students and asked one person to develop and pitch a concept for a movie to the other. The ideas were not stellar. But when pitched by the most narcissistic students, the ideas impressed the person evaluating the pitch roughly 50% more than did those from the least narcissistic pitchers.

But two independent raters were not so easily wowed. Having only seen the movie pitches in written form, they found the narcissists’ ideas to be about as creative as proposals from non-narcissists. The difference, the researchers say, was in the pitch itself: narcissists were more enthusiastic, witty, and charming—all traits, according to past research, that people associate with creativity.

Continue Reading Is Narcissism Good for Business

Want to learn more? Read The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement.