In the 2006 film The Devil Wears Prada, Meryl Streep plays Miranda Priestly,a ruthless, selfish, vain boss alongside Stanley Tucci, who plays Nigel.

London - If you think your boss is ruthless, selfish, vain and lacking social skills, you’re probably right, say scientists.

New research shows that many managers recruited to top jobs suffer from narcissistic personality disorder.

Narcissists are often brimming with self confidence and prepared to take tough decisions - just the qualities likely to impress at interview. But their self-serving nature means in practice they may not actually be the best leaders.

Researcher Christian Gimso, from the BI Norwegian Business School, studied 3 200 people applying for leadership training at Norwegian armed forces officer schools.

The candidates took an interview and were also given a personality test that measured narcissistic traits. It was found those who scored highly for narcissism also did well in the interviews - and so were more likely to be accepted as officer cadets.

Gimso said: “Leaders who score high on narcissistic traits lack the ability to relate to others. They run their own agenda with no thought for the people around them. This can mean poor leadership performance.”