The contest for the National Party leadership and the job of Prime Minister lasted barely 72 hours.
John Key's endorsement of his deputy Bill English was, in the end, sufficient for the party MPs to accept a road-tested political figure against the high-risk candidacy of Judith Collins or the ambition of Jonathan Coleman.
So the transition proceeds without the rancour which ultimately destroyed the career of Jenny Shipley, the last National Party leader installed by the caucus rather than by New Zealand's voters.
The only vote required from the party's 59 MPs is to settle on a deputy.
The change at the top has occurred so rapidly that it is not clear how an English-led Government might differ from the pragmatic approach that defined Key's time in office.
This has left the country short-changed. In the space of a momentous few days, the electorate has not heard from those with the privilege of leading the country just what they plan to do, and what steps are proposed to address economic challenges and visible social problems.
This is unsatisfactory and hopefully will be resolved once change at the top is formally settled next week.
The one certain change English is making is appointing Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce as his replacement in the finance portfolio.
Joyce will be buoyed by the latest Treasury assessment of the state of the economy.
These forecast a string of surpluses in the next few years, sufficient to absorb the unexpected costs of the Kaikoura earthquake and give the Government some spending options.
Where the country needs to hear from the newly-installed leadership is in several testing policy areas. Sooner or later, a Government is going to have make some brave calls on superannuation.
The longer it is put off, then more painful adjustments may be required, especially if the economy turns sour. By 2036, it is projected that one in four New Zealanders will be aged 65-plus. The cost of superannuation will rise inexorably. The burden of paying for it needs to be fair.
The cost of housing is another area where the Government has fallen down. Too many young New Zealanders remain shut out of the housing market, and the supply of new homes proceeds at glacial speed.
Where is the resolve to free-up more land, to cut as promised red tape and devise incentives that satisfy a clear demand of affordable homes for families?
Areas of economic performance are patchy. New Zealand lags behind Australia in productivity, despite assertions the gap would be closed. Instead it has widened.
What policies are proposed to address this area, to ensure that young New Zealanders put their talents to work at home?
On the the social policy side, New Zealand has some difficult challenges. Thousands of low income New Zealanders struggle to see the fruits of a stronger economy.
As many as one in three adult Maori rely on benefit income. The country's prison population has taken off in the last decade, and the cost of locking up offenders is in the billions of dollars.
What new measures can we expect in these areas? During the brief but intense leadership discussions this week, the idea of rejuvenation took root. The new administration has the chance to embrace the idea.
New Zealand is to have a new, if familiar, prime minister. The country deserves to hear some fresh ideas.