Because they’re regarded as patronizing. Now that I think of it, this might be true all around. I know that if anyone in a business context offers me a flattering comment (as in “boy, you sure do know a lot of people!”), that’s a signal that I’m not going to get what I’m looking for. If they toss you a bone, you’re a dead man. I’d probably feel the same if someone was to call me “smart”, “clever” or “brilliant” in a business meeting. My eyebrows would rise and I’d immediately mutter to myself, “This person is fucking with me.” So a word to the wise — don’t go there.