Toxic employees have come under serious investigation lately. In this study (N= 419) we examined the role the Dark Triad traits, as measures of being a toxic employee, play in predicting tactics of workplace manipulation and how the Dark Triad might mediate sex differences in the adoption of hard (e.g., threats) and soft tactics (e.g., offering compliments). Psychopathy and Machiavellianism were correlated with adopting hard tactics whereas Machiavellianism and narcissism were correlated with adopting soft tactics. The Dark Triad composite fully mediated the sex differences in the adoption of hard tactics but not soft tactics. The Dark Triad may facilitate the adoption of numerous tactics of influence independently but collectively may lead men more than women to adopt an aggressive or forceful style of interpersonal influence at the workplace. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.
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