I don't think I was being a suck up, but I did once tell my boss that I thought he was really smart. Too many times he had all the answers and I had none. I was so surprised when he responded to me that he thought that I was much smarter than he was and he then explained that the difference between him and me was that he had lots of experience. (One of my first lessons in patience, although I probably didn't know it at the time).
As the years went by and my career advanced, I'd sometimes have someone "shadow" me for a day or two. It takes some planning to orchestrate a day with meetings that will be meaningful for someone who doesn't know all the ins and outs of the business, but I always considered it to be a great learning experience. I'd also schedule lots of talk time for meeting debriefings and explanations - - and hopefully perspective.
I ended a shadow day with a career discussion and the person who was doing the shadowing told me that he wanted my job. I took that as a compliment and started the dialog about what it would take to get there. That wasn't good enough for him - - he really thought he was ready for my job right away! I was stunned!
Forget the fact that he needed about 3 promotions. His judgment and understanding of the big picture just wasn't there and it was even worse to tell that to me.
But my lesson here is far more than a lesson in working with execs when you aren't one. We all know stuff and we are all proud of what we know. But we live in an interpersonal world where people judge people all the time and you should always be aware of whom you are talking to and what you are saying.
No matter how smart you are or what you think you know, please, please don't flaunt it especially when you are young in the business. Let people find it out from your actions, not your words. Many years ago, my wife and I loved to play audio productions from a company called Classical Kids with our children. One of our favorites was Mr. Bach Comes to Call. Interacting with a young girl in our modern time, he taught this same lesson as he reminded her to not praise herself. And he did it so well!
It quickly became one of those teaching opportunities that we used all the time. Although my kids would understand it, too bad my "shadow" wouldn't have understood if I asked him "What Mr. Bach would say" about his comment.