It's a volatile world. Wealth, influence, and power of position can be lost quickly - and in ways that wouldn't have been predicted. Therefore, even the most deferential among us, including the scared rabbit types, are treating relationships as horizontal. It's a level playing field. That's why we're not allowing anyone to suck up all the oxygen, at least not for long.
Whether it's a speech at the Detroit Economic Club, a conversation at Starbucks, or a sales pitch, the new way of presentation of self is equal time, with erring on the side of not saying enough. The role model for that might be copywriter Peggy Olson in "Mad Men." She establishes a very strong presence in the world of alpha males and creative egos by making less be more. Her profile is low. She speaks few words. She holds the emotion, though it was a time when females could get away with that. And we all sense that when the rest of the office tanks, Olson will be in an office on another side of town running her own wildly successful ad shop.
When someone does try to take over all the air in a room now, we just look at that man or woman in a puzzled manner. We wonder why they are hell-bent on blowing it.