Another dot in the blogosphere?

Innovation inoculation

Posted on: August 15, 2019

I listen to several podcasts. One I meander to frequently is the Pessimists Archive. (Yes, I have mentioned it before. No, I am not sponsored to do this.)

I listened to the episode on The Waltz. I did not realise that one objection to the dance was that women would get dizzy and then lose themselves to lust. Never mind that the restrictive clothing and poor ventilation were more likely culprits.

Another objection to the waltz was that women had moves equal to those of men. So men, concerned more about ego and place, sought to protect the fairer sex from such perceived evil.

Doing the waltz is a non-issue today. So how did such a change take place?

One contributor to change was the polka, which came after the waltz. It was similar to the waltz except that it was “the happy, bouncy version”. The polka allowed people to see the waltz as safe because nothing bad happened after people spun around a room in both cases.

This led the narrator to reveal a change principle:

If something seems threatening, find a safer way to express that same thing. It’s like innovation inoculation, a vaccine for new things.

Change agents with serious agendas can relate. The changes that they see are urgent and important, but they face the inertia of entire organisations or societies. Trying to ring change in its immediate and pure form is likely to be stopped dead in its tracks. They might try the sneaky but possibly more effective inoculation method instead.

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