I’m really getting interested in this selfishness conundrum. The problem appears to be that companies do better with selfless leaders (better employee engagement) but end up promoting selfish ones to leadership jobs.
It goes even farther when you look at what employees actually prefer versus what they do. Countless studies show that employees prefer selfless leaders but will actually pick selfish ones to lead them.
“Individuals who act in their own self-interest are more likely to gain dominance and leadership recognition than those who exhibit altruistic characteristics, according to a recent study.”
According to the research, generosity is not seen as a virtue by employees but self interest is. Employees in competitive situations will choose leaders whose self interested behaviour makes them appear more dominant.
I guess that this is a great example of how we are our own worst enemies.