Publication Date

Spring 2010


We examine the link between narcissism and creativity at the individual, relational, and group levels of analysis. We find that narcissists are not necessarily more creative than others but they think they are, and they are adept at convincing others to agree with them. In the first study, narcissism was positively associated with self-rated creativity, despite the fact that blind coders saw no difference between the creative products offered by those low and high on narcissism. In a second study, more narcissistic individuals asked to pitch creative ideas to a target person were judged by the targets as being more creative than were less narcissistic individuals, in part because narcissists were more enthusiastic. Finally, in a study of group creativity, we find evidence of a curvilinear effect: having more narcissists is better for generating creative outcomes (but having too many provides diminishing returns).


Suggested Citation
Goncalo, J. A., Flynn, F. J., & Kim, S. H. (2010). From a mirage to an oasis: Narcissism, perceived creativity, and creative performance. Retrieved [insert date] from Cornell University, ILR School site:

Required Publisher Statement
The final paper is forthcoming in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, published by SAGE Publications.