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be all things to all men (or people)

Definition of be all things to all men or people in English:

1Please everyone, typically by regularly altering one’s behavior or opinions in order to conform to those of others.
Example sentences
  • Of course, just as SAC cannot be all things to all people, the cultural strategy will not please everyone or meet all needs.
  • Simply put, like the Toronto event, it is expected to be all things to all people.
  • It was a superb attempt to be all things to all men that culminated in a result that made everyone happy.
1.1Be able to be interpreted or used differently by different people to their own satisfaction.
Example sentences
  • You may not be able to be all things to all people, but when it comes to dairy packaging, the industry is sure trying.
  • It is trying to be all things to all people, while selling upmarket food.
  • ‘You're asking a piece of wood to be all things to all people,’ he says.
See parent entry: thing
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