Pedro Arantesrose

Law of Triviality

People within an organization commonly give disproportionate weight to trivial issues.
Zettelkasten, January 07, 2021 (changes)


  • People within an organization commonly give disproportionate weight to trivial issues.
    • If they need to discuss a database architecture (more important) and the color of a button (less important), they'll spend more time discussing the button.
    • This happens because the more important topic the more complex it may be, and the group assumes that the ones who'll work on it understand it.
      • An average person cannot understand it, the majority of the group.
    • The less important topic may be less complex, everyone has an opinion and want to add a personal contribution.
      • Can result in endless discussion.
        • Now imagine this scenario and add a lot of bureaucracy and formalisms, like a parliamentary session.
  • Also known as:
    • bicycle-shed effect;
    • bike-shed effect;
    • bike-shedding.
  • It's a corollary of the Parkinson's Law.


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