There has been anecdotal and case-study evidence suggesting that successful business executives share personality characteristics with psychopaths. The question is, are the characteristics that make up personality disorders fundamentally different from the characteristics of extreme personalities we see in everyday life, or do they differ only in degree?
A 2001 study found that mental patients, prison inmates and business executives shared many traits, according to the article. However, there were some differences:
The executives were significantly more likely to demonstrate characteristics associated with histrionic personality disorder, like superficial charm, insincerity, egocentricity and manipulativeness. They were also significantly less likely to demonstrate physical aggression, irresponsibility with work and finances, lack of remorse and impulsiveness.