Are you surrounded by yes-men and yes-women?
Have you noticed that a significant proportion of successful business owners seem to have an almost unending supply of yes-men* in their entourage?
I used to think this was an ego thing, rather like the pictures of themselves on the office wall, the swanky office extensively more luxurious than enjoyed by their employees, the plethora of secretaries and personal assistants servicing just the one person (the boss), and the limo parked ostentatiously outside with the personalised numberplate (1AM GR8 or something similar). Or am I just an old cynic?
But now I’m wondering whether, in actual fact, yes-men are an important ingredient of entrepreneurial success…
- It can be a lonely job running your own business at times: maybe the yes-men provide the comfort and re-assurance that some entrepreneurs need.
- Perhaps yes-men aren’t in fact yes-men. They just appear to be, but actually are gently and tactfully persuasive – having worked out that that’s the best way of influencing the boss. So no direct disagreement; instead, apparent agreement, but taking a tangential direction.
- Who wants to surround themselves with people who disagree with them all the time? The business owner makes a decision and everyone else completely and unquestioningly buys into it. After all, it’s often not whether the business direction is spot on the best, it’s the energy and enthusiasm with which it’s implemented that counts.
So maybe that why some of us are almost unemployable.
*=for the avoidance of repetition please accept that the word yes-men includes yes-women.