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Managing a Dishonest Employee? Take Action.


Honesty 200 blogWe’ve all dealt with them – the employee that makes questionable decisions around the office, whether that’s stealing some pens from the supply closet or, more seriously, pocketing company revenue on the sly.

It’s “time to admit that some people are more vulnerable to unethical temptations than others,” says Dr. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, Hogan Assessments’ vp of research and innovation, “and managers can play an important role in attenuating (or increasing) the rate of unethical incidents in their teams and organizations.” Here are some tips on how to manage these morally weak employees.

Engage them. Even less ethical individuals will be more likely to act morally if they are engaged at work. By the same token, alienating employees may enhance moral disengagement even in those with higher integrity.

Lead by example.  For managers, the implication is clear: if you want your employees to act morally, start by acting morally yourself.

Pair them with ethical peers. Teaming your less moral employees with colleagues who have strong integrity will motivate them to behave more ethically. Humans learn via observation and imitation, and much of this learning occurs without awareness.

Invest in moral training. Organizations can influence employees’ ethical choices via explicit educational programs. For example, the Ethics Resource Center reports that businesses that implement formal programs to support ethical choices, such as whistleblowing, decrease counterproductive behaviors and misconduct rates, as well as increasing employee satisfaction.

Reduce their temptation. Everybody has a dark side, but the antisocial aspects of our personalities are much more likely to surface in toxic environments or situations of weak moral pressure. It is hard to change someone’s personality, but managers can do a great deal to affect the environment employees inhabit.

Create an altruistic culture. Although organizational culture cannot be created overnight, meta-analytic reviews have demonstrated that a caring culture prevents unethical work behaviors, whereas a culture of self-interest promotes them.

Find out how to put these tips into action in our ebook 6 Ways to Keep Your Manager Honest.

Four Qualities You Think are Great in a Hire, But Actually Aren’t


HonestIn business, the adage holds true that one bad apple can spoil the bunch – even one dishonest manager can cost companies hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars, in low morale and lost productivity. Unfortunately, history shows that there is more than one bad apple in the business world, and dishonest work behaviors, such as staff abuse, rule bending, and theft cost the economy billions each year.

How can organizations combat dishonesty in their management team? They can start by recognizing why dishonest individuals are such enticing hires. Unfortunately, the same attractive qualities we find in these candidates are the same qualities that will short change us in the long run.

1. CharismaPsychologists recorded 73 first-year college students individually introducing themselves to a group. The study found students with narcissistic tendencies excelled at making initial impressions. They used more charming facial expressions, a more confident speaking tone, were funnier, wore more fashionable clothes and had trendier haircuts.

2. Self-absorption – The second characteristic is an unusual degree of self-absorption, or, more to the point, a relentless drive for self-advancement. These individuals possess a ruthless dedication to self-advancement to the extent that other people lose their value as humans and become objects to be manipulated.

3. Self-Deception – Ben Dattner, author of The Blame Game, notes that narcissists “lead with the main purpose of receiving personal credit or glory. When things go wrong or they make mistakes, they deny or distort information and rewrite history in order to avoid getting blamed.”

4. Hollow Core Syndrome – The underlying dynamic that unifies these themes is a pattern of personality characteristics called the hollow core syndrome. The hollow core refers to people who are overtly self-confident, but who are privately self-doubting and unhappy.

Learn more about combating dishonesty in the workplace and managing the dishonest employee.

Drinks with Hogan | Talent Management


Is HR getting better? More importantly, what is holding it back? In this installment of Drinks with Hogan, HR consultant William Tincup and Dr. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic discuss the perils of putting talent management and payroll in the same hands.

Dr. Hogan to Speak at The Psychometrics Forum


The Psychometrics Forum invites you to their September event, Illuminating the Dark Side.

Thursday, September 25, 2014
The Caledonian Club
9A Halkin Street, Belgravia
London SW1X 7DR 

In the morning session, Dr. Robert Hogan will share his perspective on his widely used personality instrument, the Hogan Development Survey, looking at how humans can use their Dark Side for personal gains. Making the link between personality and decision making, the session will conclude with an examination of how his new assessment, Hogan Decisions Style Model can highlight an individual’s post decision biases and capacity to achieve good judgment.

In the afternoon session, Andrew Munro will give an expert user’s perspective on the Dark Side, focussing on strategic leadership and business decision-making. He will also contend why we must get over our obsession with personality assessment and address the dynamics of context, individual and situational factors.

For more information or to register, email

Drinks with Hogan | Work Life Balance


In the seventh installment of our video series, Corporate Solutions Consultant Jennifer Lowe discusses whether work life balance is dead, the potential consequences of blurring the lines between work life and home life, and what companies can do to keep employees productive when they’re working 24/7.

Drinks with Hogan | The Future of Personality and HR


After years lagging behind their marketing colleagues, HR finally embraced the power of data. The question is, what's next? In this episode of our monthly web series Drinks with Hogan, Dr. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic and HR iconoclast William Tincup discuss the future of personality and HR.

Global Norms: A Global Solution for the Global Economy


flags resized 600At Hogan we say that reputation is everything. In the workplace the way others view your behavior is much more meaningful than how you view yourself. But this begs the question, who are these “others” that are viewing me, and does my reputation change if the group of “others” change? The answers lie in the norms. 

When you take our assessments your individual score is compared to a relative group that we call a norm. Norms determine the group by whose lens you are viewed. This means your assessment results indeed do change based on on who is viewing you. Just like you get a different picture when the camera lens changes, you will get a different picture of someone’s reputation in an assessment when the norm changes.   

We create our norm groups based on different languages because we feel this offers the best and simplest way to define a cultural group. If someone takes an assessment using the Thai norm, their results will be scored based on how people who speak Thai view that person’s reputation. If the same person takes the assessment using Swedish norms, that person’s results will change based on the Swedish speaking population.

We offer over 50 different single language-based norms including Simplified Chinese norms, Polish norms, US English norms, Australian English norms, etc. But with the growing presence of companies doing business across borders and cultures and with multinational companies spanning multiple countries, this creates a dilenma; with which cultural lens should we view the assessment results of a country director in China who reports to an Indian boss in France? Or, for that matter, of any person working in a multinational or multicultural context?

Our solution is an all encompassing multi-lingual global norm. Our research team used data from over 40 different languages and multiple geographic regions to create a global norm that allows us to view assessment results from a global perspective.

Our global norm is a great solution for organizations with any cross-cultural or international business. In fact because in today’s global economy most companies work in a global context, we actually recommend the global norm as our preferred default norm.

Reputation is everything, and our global norm provides you with the opportunity to measure an individual’s reputation using a truly global perspective.

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Stressed Much? A Closer Look At What's Killing You


StressFew would expect to hear the death knoll at work, but 80% of people name their job as the main source of stress - an emotional state of tension that can have long-term negative effects on health.

Studies show that chronic stress can increase people’s chances of experiencing a diagnosable mental or emotional disorder, suffering from depression and anxiety, and having panic attacks.

And it’s not just psychological. Chronic stress is also linked to increases in metabolic syndrome, a collection of signs and symptoms – obesity, high blood pressure, and a larger waist size – that increase the risk of heart disease. Three out of four doctor’s visits are for stress-related ailments or complaints!

Work-related stress can also have an effect on family life. Men and women with greater amounts of stress were more reactive to the normal ups and downs of relationships. Alcohol consumption also has a positive correlation with amount of stress an adult takes home.

All of this could easily be avoided – at least 75% of people said the most stressful aspect of their job is their immediate boss. Find out how your leadership and employees could benefit from a closer examination of work-related stressors in our ebook Stress is Killing You.

EQ in the Healthcare Industry


Patient safety is a major concern for the medical industry. Although hospitals have advanced systems to monitor and improve patient safety, they largely ignore one of the largest drivers of patient safety: emotional intelligence.

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Myth Busting Innovation


MythAre you being taken in by innovation myths? Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic debunks three falsehoods about being innovative within an organization in a recent Fast Company article.

1. The Personality Cult: While it’s true that some individuals are more innovative than others, it’s the side-kick and/or creative team that turn the vision into a concrete product. The qualities that make an individual innovative are more likely related to certain personality traits like “a hungry mind, openness to new experiences, and problems with authority,” says Chamorro-Premuzic. But we should remember that “innovation is always the product of teams, rather than the heroic effort of isolated individuals,” he continues.

2. The Glorification of Risk: “It is popular opinion that risk and innovation go hand in hand…The fact is that innovation requires a very small dose of risk,” says Chamorro-Premuzic. “Of course,” he continues, “there are risks associated with any innovation--as Jeff Bezos noted, if you know it’s going to work, then it’s not an experiment. But that’s precisely why a cautionary approach to innovation is more likely to pay off.”

3. The Confidence Delusion: “Most people overestimate how creative they really are,” says Chamorro-Premuzic. “This positive self-delusion creates three major problems,” he continues. First, self-deluded individuals are less likely to continually better themselves since they think they’re already creative enough. Second, it is easy to mistake confidence for competence. Third, when the confidence outshines competence, individuals are likely to be seen as entitled and narcissistic by their peers – not a healthy way to inspire creativity.

“Crucially, innovation requires a series of coordinated management efforts and effective leadership. People will always differ in their creative potential, but with the right culture in place every employee will feel compelled to unleash their creative potential,” concludes Chamorro-Premuzic.

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