Wolff discusses his Mercedes future as he explains need for Brazil GP experiment
Toto Wolff says he always wanted to undertake the Brazil GP experiment of missing a race, while he discusses about his future at Mercedes.
Having won both the F1 titles by US GP, Mercedes trialed to function a grand prix without the services of its team principal Wolff as the Austrian chose to skip Brazil GP. It was an experiment to discover how the team would function without their chief.
Wolff elaborated that he always wished to do that as his work with Mercedes is growing and that with the F1 calendar getting bigger and bigger, he is on the same boat as his colleagues in terms of traveling to grand prix events.
"The experiment in Brazil GP was to find out that, with a 22 race calendar, if I would choose some I would miss, in order to not do the full 22 and have other senior members of the team," said Wolff to media including FormulaRapida.net.
"It was something I always wanted to do, and it was strange for me, somehow the relaxation factor was really high. The sport psychologist explained that with the fact that, I knew that everybody else was working, and I didn't, which makes it double the enjoyment.
"Like I said, all of us play senior roles in the team, and need to be aware of the contribution we bring. If the contribution is important, then you need to go to all the races." Staying with the topic of working with his team, Wolff touched on his personal motivation as well.
"I observe my own motivation and energy levels pretty closely, and, we are all tired of service stations this season because the traveling's simply a lot and the pressure of performance is substantial," said Wolff. "But I feel that joy in doing what I do.
"The most important part of the relationships within the team, within the Daimler organization that motivate me every single day. And I think this is one of the crucial parts - if you enjoy working with the people and you spend so much time with em, it keeps the motivation level high and this is certainly the case for me."
When asked about his role within Mercedes, Wolff credited Daimler for giving him a position which he never thought he will get. He certainly intends to stay beyond 2020 due to the trust they bestowed upon him, and the entrepreneurial freedom they provide.
"The brand is great but what has worked well for me in Mercedes is that the opportunity and the trust that was given to me in 2012, I will always honor that," said Wolff. "I think for a company like Daimler to allow a shareholding from their engine partners aka myself, is not something that came easily.
"And, the relationship has gone stronger since then, and to the decision makers, within the Daimler board, [and] the voices of many employees who have been a part of our journey, and these relationships are something which fundamentally determine our life quality.
"If I'm given the freedom to continue to manage the team in an entrepreneurial way, and I have no doubt that they will, it's obviously enjoyable from my side and provides me with entrepreneurial opportunity.
"So, I don't see myself like a football manager that maybe does a 3 or 5 year stint, and then needs to reinvent himself in another team in a different year because of the opportunity that was given to me as a shareholder."
Regarding the team's employees and their motivation, Wolff stated that Mercedes continue to provide objectives and changing the role of those whose motivations are faltering. "Motivation is key for everybody within the team," he said.
"If you are out of objectives, you need to change your role. And, this is something we have always given a lot of attention to. [We've] spent a lot of time defining our objectives- not only business objectives, also personal objectives.
"We're trying to find out what incentives we can give to our most important contributors in the team. It is not always cash, or power, it's much more direct. I'm quite certain that we will define new exciting targets that will give us a reason to push through the hard days."
[Image courtesy: Mercedes] [Note: This story was co-written by Duncan Leahy on FormulaRapida.net]