The Eagle Blog

Is Pragmatism a Thing of the Past?

Common sense quoteWebster defines pragmatism as a reasonable and logical way of doing things or of thinking about problems that is based on dealing with specific situations instead of on ideas and theories.

I like to think of pragmatism as common sense … but of course, as Voltaire is credited with saying.  “Common sense is not so common.”

In businesses we see it all the time.  Something goes wrong and there is a reaction, which might be out of perspective with the situation.  Nobody is allowed access to the internet because someone was caught surfing porn or everybody needs to change their dress code because the CEO spotted someone in ripped jeans.

We see changes in behavior sparked by one off events or results.

We see attitudes changed because of one incident.

For me pragmatism means keeping things in perspective.

It means trying to keep apply common sense in a world that wants to “react” to  every situation.

It means taking time to understand the facts.

It means being as fair as possible … in a world that is not fair.

It does not mean affecting everyone adversely in order to address the issues of a few.

What are your favorite examples demonstrating a lack of pragmatism?

“The three great essentials to achieve anything worth while are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense.”  Thomas A Edison

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
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