Chocolate Milk - Leadership SHIFT Tip
I was recently speaking to one of our peloton members who was frustrated with her team. During our chat, I shared a story about my youngest daughter and chocolate milk.
Some may remember it from years ago, but if you don’t, here’s the short version for some context.
When Grady was in pre-school, she was self-sufficient in the kitchen. She loved making breakfast. So during my morning bike rides, she would whip up something tasty. It was impressive except for her lack of clean-up — putting away the milk wasn’t her strength.
By the time I got home, the milk was lukewarm. And milk is either good cold or hot — lukewarm post-ride recovery chocolate milk is no bueno. And let’s say, it was a mild frustration I expressed to Grady.
So what does leadership and chocolate milk have in common?
“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.”
Well, it’s easy to think that our team should do what we tell them to do because we are the boss. But Grady reinforced the need to be curious. Because people, including my awesome daughters, don’t follow through for a variety of reasons like believing that they:
- Are already doing it
- Don’t know what to do
- Don’t know how to do it
- Don’t have the tools to do it
- Don’t have to do it
- Don’t want to do it.
Using obedience or force to get things done is lazy. It’s easy. Being curious about why your team is challenged takes more time, but it will lead to better conversations, more trust, and a stronger peloton over time.
And as for Grady? Well, she wanted to play in her room. She was four — come one, who wouldn’t? But we came up with a plan, and thankfully, she’s great about putting away the milk today.
Have fun storming the castle, but please don’t forget to put away the milk when you are finished.
And discover how you can develop more resilience, grit, and 20 ways to become your best in my memoir, Shift: Creating Better Tomorrows. All net proceeds go to World Bicycle Relief.