Crock-Pots and Microwaves
David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer

I remember when my parents got their first microwave. It was a Tappan, and my aunt and uncle bought it from the Tappan factory in Ohio. It was so amazing. An oven that could make water boil in a couple of minutes. We really didn’t know what to expect. Was it dangerous? Could the microwave harm us if we stood too close? We were told to never operate it empty, so for weeks my parents kept a cup of water in it. We were also told to never put a hardboiled egg in because it would explode. Well, I did, and it did, and then I had to clean up the inside of the microwave. They also told us to never put metal in it. Well, I did, and sparks flew.

The Crock-Pot. Less exciting for sure. Nothing is happening quickly there. When you turn it on you need to wait several minutes to see if it’s working. No fans, no rotating tables to make sure the food is heated evenly. Totally safe. You can put anything in it, literally anything. No sparks, no explosions, no excitement. Just a slow cooker. There is something about the Crock-Pot that’s amazing. You can put a tough piece of meat in it early in the morning and by dinner time, it’s so tender, falls right off the bone. Flavors seem to blend into one another in a very delicious and almost comforting way. You start it off in the morning and by dinner, you are ready for a feast — no worry, no fuss, no watching, just slow cooking all day long.

By now, you are either hungry or wondering what this has to do with anything related to leadership and growth. Too often, we try to microwave our growth. We are looking for a quick fix, the quick hit that will take us to the next level. Just like dieting and getting in shape, quick fixes don’t work. Crock-Pot learning, on the other hand, delivers great growth over time. Slow and even heat, over time, brings our growth up to temperature and even softens stubborn, tough habits. Our learnings begin to blend together in a masterpiece of flavorful experiences that will last a lifetime. Don’t look for a quick fix. Take the slow road and you will be amazed at how much you will grow.

If you would like to hear more on this topic, please join Marisa Norcross and me for Episode 135 of The Next Page podcast was we look at the best ways to slow cook our growth.

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