Wine Connection


Joe Maddon, head coach of the Chicago Cubs, has a unique approach to handling “bad news.”

When a player violates a team rule, Maddon asks the player to draw a slip of paper out of a glass bowl in his office. Each slip contains the name of a wonderful bottle of wine which Maddon, an oenophile, has carefully selected.

He asks the player to buy that wine and uncork it with him.

“Maddon links the act of discipline to the act of reconnection,”, writes Daniel Coyle in his excellent new book The Culture Code.

Every transgression, every rupture in a relationship, is an opportunity: it opens the door to the joy of reconnection.

Joe Maddon built a World Series-winning baseball team and a legendary clubhouse culture by recognizing this simple truth: behind every sin, behind every poor performance, and behind every violation of some policy lies a deep desire for communion.

It’s at the moment of rupture that we’re most tempted to withdraw and disconnect, weighed down by discouragement.

But it’s the moment when it’s most important to double down and reconnect.

So the next time a colleague or employee steps outside the culture of the organization, invite them back.

And what’s more inviting than a bottle of 2016 David Moreau Maranges Rouge?




  • Haley Pontiff Reply March 14, 2019 at 2:23

    I love this!!

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