The disease to please

by Parvez Sheik Fareed

In the business world most people are scared shitless. They suffer from the disease to please. Pleasing bosses, pleasing clients, pleasing plants. Whatever pops up that can be pleased.

Being liked dictates their agenda, because their existence depends on external validation. They adjust their opinion and actions as soon as the person whom they are trying to please adjusts his opinion and actions (because he too needs to please someone). The result: they create chaos where chaos serves no purpose. They cause trouble where trouble serves no purpose. It’s an absolute nightmare to work with pleasers.

They are obsessed with doing everything right in order to hit the 10 on the pleaseometer. And doing everything right means doing what they have been told to do without questioning if it really solves the business problem. Nodding enthusiastically. Not asking critical questions. Not objecting. Instead of figuring out what solves the problem, their priority is to please. They think that by pleasing they are actually solving the business problem. Which is a fundamentally misleading way of thinking. Because really solving the problem would certainly be the best way of actually pleasing someone, wouldn’t it?

Pleasing is a top priority in the business world. Because when you simply do what you were told, you can’t be held accountable when it goes wrong. “I did what I was told” comes in handy as an excuse. But this approach backfires and the blame game starts. The pleaser above will blame the pleaser below or next to him (remember, he too needs to please someone). And while everybody is busy focusing on pleasing someone, the real business problem is still unsolved.

That’s why I don’t want to work with pleasers. They’ve got no balls and confuse pleasing people with solving a problem.