A yes person, formerly known as a yes man, frequently gives unwarranted positive encouragement to others. This is an organizational behavior learned in environments that prioritize a positive “cando” attitude over other qualities such as candor and intelligence. These are the primary characteristics of a yes person.
Sycophancy is the act of influencing others via the use of flattery and agreeableness.
Yes people contribute to an organization’s optimism by displaying their support for others and their belief in the effectiveness of ideas. There is usually no foundation behind this enthusiasm. However, one may argue that unrealistic optimism is more effective than unrealistic pessimism.
3. Conflict Avoidance
Individuals can become yes people when they have a low tolerance for arguments to the point where they value peace with others over making an intelligent contribution.
A yes person may develop the habit of focusing on how to please others instead of on the issues and decisions at hand. As such, they may use phrases they are unfamiliar with and advocate for changes they have not examined.
5. Gaming The System
Yes people view organizations as a game in which political points are earned by supporting others. They could be charged with gaming the system, as this method does not address actual business issues.
Cronyism occurs when authority and resources are distributed according to relationships instead of merit. Yes people seek cronyism in the belief that being sympathetic to authority figures will get them promotions and bonuses, or at the very least keep them from being fired.
Yes people are prone to taking on projects they will never finish. That is, by quickly accepting requests, they just take on more work than they are capable of doing. This is not to say that they are unproductive. Some yes people are hungry for approval and thus prefer high-priority tasks while committing to other things they will never deliver.
8. Command and Control
A group of yes people resembles a command and control system in which top-down directives get no resistance from the organization, even if they are completely irrational. This is not always a terrible thing, especially if those at the top are exceptionally skilled.
9. Decision Efficiency
A yes person contributes to reducing social friction associated with problem-solving and decision-making by giving agreeableness. One could argue that they provide considerable value in situations when there are too many highly critical thinkers who want to discuss every issue unendingly.
Mediocrity is a desperate state in which an individual clings to a group for protection, security, comfort, and sustenance while diminishing their contribution to the group. A yes person is a part of the diverse universe of mediocre behavior.
Yes people with an authoritarian personality are readily dominated by those who wish to punish qualities such as individualism, critical thinking, and rationality that contradict group consensus and harmony. As such, they allow the awful manifestations of group behavior, in which groups become cruel and stupid.
Want more informative content? Check out LivingByExample’s article covering the examples of reciprocity.
Brielle used to write for a pop culture magazine, where she handled a small “good news” section by the back of the print media. Brian and Cynthia took notice and offered her the editor post upon forming Living By Example . Years later and she now leads our pool of writers across the globe