Observation inspired by “Art of the Idea” of John Hunt: “Expediency is not an idea”.
It’s difficult to have an idea in an environment that stands for nothing. The quality of the idea is never discussed, but rather how much the implementation could upset those surrounding it. Everyone applauds the thinking while simultaneously creating an escape hatch for themselves concerning the execution.
New thinking usually needs the involvement of others. Very few ideas survive the third person trap.
Taking the path of least resistance is the surest way to celebrate what you’ve already achieved and stay a slave to the ordinary.
If a new idea is worth anything, it should make everyone a little nervous. It will be tougher to sell. But these are all good signs. It means the idea carries change within it. The opposite of expediency is tenacity. The first test of an idea is the level of commitment to it.
Expediency is so liberally applied because of its ability to offend no one. In the longer term, though, expediency is extremely corrosive to ideas. It allows you to marinate in the mediocre. Everyone is content, but no one is ecstatic. The more you use it, the more it offers a false sense of security. Why change? Everything seems ok.
But if you stay in the middle of the road, you will eventually be run over both ways. No man’s land is not safe territory.
Unfortunately, it soon becomes obvious that if you stand for nothing, then that’s also what you attract. For ideas to work, they have to bounce off something of substance.
When things are going well, taking no risks seems like a very smart strategy. When times are tough, though, you’ll notice expediency, which is meant to create all those happy, smiley faces, is suddenly wearing a smirk.