Alpha males – Everything is their fault

Whether it’s football or business alpha males are taking a kicking.

The French have already blamed the Premier League for turning their players into “over-paid egos” and Michael Ballack made a similar point before the game against Germany saying English players had to lose their egos and their narcissistic “me, me, me” attitude for the sake of the team.

In The Times(1/7/010) Germany’s twice-scoring Mueller is reported as saying “alpha males cost England”. He said the alpha male culture has destroyed team camaraderie and there is a surfeit of leaders (witness Terry’s failed coup d’etat). “… there are so many alpha males and you don’t just need chiefs you also need indians. Are the players willing to go the extra mile for their team-mates?” he asks. And in the same newspaper the French have described their team as; “rotten, spoilt, brats”.

And who can disagree. The sight of England players being molly-coddled with their top of the range earphones, game boys and special sleep pillows as they arrived, then being shepherded back in black glass vehicles like visiting VIPs to avoid meeting the public rather than as a shamed national team. At least the French made their team fly back second class!

18 months ago Management Today featured a couple of interesting articles. Baroness Kingsmill (some may think her a slice short of a full loaf of course) predicts the end for Alpha Males ie “people who think work-life balance is for wimps and women”  and who are “insulated by their egos,,, have no self-awareness” and “see feedback as a personal attack”.

In other words sociopathic and without emotional intelligence.

On a similar note in the same journal Emma de Vita bemoans the testosterone fuelled culture in the city and suggests women could fix things “pooper scoopers in hand”. Amongst her polemic she makes some interesting points about leadership styles and cites some research at London Business School that found that having a 50-50 gender balance produced more effective, stable and innovative teams; a finding that the Norwegian government  put into practice in January.

In Norway all public companies are required by law to have 40% of females on the board and Spain has given companies 10 years to follow suit. France is currently considering a 40% quota as well an increase from the current 10% (similar to that in the UK). See:


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