When Your Sweet Tooth Works Against Your Team!

As humans, we naturally follow the path of least resistance. Every day we see countless ads and services that promise us the fastest, the quickest, and the most pain free solutions to our problems. It sounds great but we all know true growth takes time, and so much of our success depends on the environment around us. Nothing shows this better than our relationship to candy in the experiment below!


There was a study that showed how the convenience of the food around us affects how much we are likely to eat.In the study, each participant was given sealed, transparent dishes full of candies that were rotated among three locations in their office.

  • During the first week, a participant would find that their dish was on the corner of their desk.
  • During the second week, it was in the top left-hand desk drawer.
  • During the third and final week, it was on a filing cabinet six feet from their desk.

Other participants would be given their candies in a different order, but the three places were always the same - on the desk, in the desk drawer, and six feet from the desk.


Typically, a participant ate about nine candies per day if they were sitting on their desk staring right at them. That is about 225 extra calories per day. If they had to go to the effort of opening the desk drawer, they did so only six times per day. If they had to get up and walk six feet to get candy, they only ate four.It's not always worth the effort to walk six feet for a candy. The basic principle is convenience. Simply moving the candy dish to an inconvenient spot caused the participants to eat less.


If convenience is a crucial element to having great success, then as leaders we should make it our goal to make our tasks as easy as possible.Resistance, adversity, and challenges WILL COME and we definitely want to equip our team to tackle those with grit, tenacity, and resilience, but when we can LET'S NOT MAKE IT HARDER THAN IT NEEDS TO BE.

Here's 3 quick questions to think on...

  1. What are the responsibilities and outcomes you want your team to perform?
  2. Evaluate how easy it is for your team to execute them? What resistance do they face?
  3. What small or significant change could you implement to create a path of least resistance?

These are some great questions to ask your team while you treat them to some candy as well.

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