Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

How Narcissism Relates to Social Rank Dynamics in Teams

Tianyue Xu, The University of Western Ontario


Team performance can be impaired when two team members both believe they outrank one another in status (upward-status disagreement; USD; Kilduff et al., 2016). Drawing from the narcissistic admiration and rivalry concept (Back et al., 2013), the current study examined how two forms of narcissism distinctively relate to USDs across a team’s lifecycle. Gathering data at four time points, I studied over 126 small task teams from inception to dissolution. The results indicate that narcissistic admiration did not predict one’s status perception tendency or absolute status. However, narcissistic admiration predicted the number of USDs one experiences during team formation and before team dissolution. Narcissistic rivalry predicted other-status derogation across all time points and a decrease in absolute status over time. Moreover, narcissistic rivalry predicted the number of USDs one experiences during team formation. My thesis highlights how both forms of narcissism may lead to undesirable social outcomes.