HiPPO is not uncommon in a startup where design decisions were originally made from the subjectivity of personal tastes. This can hinder the design process from ever maturing into a competitive advantage.
I have experienced such a precedent that enabled a chain of command to override best design practices and operations, from the leadership’s lack of familiarity with the domain.
Course-correcting this situation is unlikely when expediency has justified this MO. Change may not happen until an exit, or the next funding event.