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Does your business operate like a winning pit stop?

by Olivier Carion

Does Your Business Operate Like a Winning Pit Stop?


In F1, pit stops play a vital part in each pilot’s race. It is a well-rehearsed procedure, very much like a precisely choreographed dance. The team of mechanics works in perfect harmony to change the four tyres as quickly as they possibly can.


After much preparation and rehearsing, Red Bull Racing holds the record for the fastest pit stop time of 2.05 seconds in 2013. They then smashed it in 1.923 seconds at the United States Grand Prix that same season.


F1 is very much a team sport and the pit box is where teamwork is most clearly showcased. Each team has about 20 people. Refuelling is no longer allowed, so only the four tyres are changed during the stop. Three mechanics are assigned to each tyre: one to operate the wheel gun, one to take the tyre off and one to put a fresh-new tyre on the hub. In addition, two people are needed to stabilise the car and two other people operate the rear and front jacks to lift the car when it arrives.


The crew is ready in position for the job to be done quickly and smoothly so that the pilot can get back out on track in as little time as possible.  It requires the driver to stop on specific marks. If he goes too far or stops too soon, he can lose several seconds as the mechanics need to reposition themselves. All in all, it is a very impressive choreography.

What about your business?  Does it operate in perfect harmony like a winning F1 pit stop to deliver what your clients want and expect?

You might think this is a tall order, but perhaps we can get some business inspiration from a harmonious and efficient F1 pit stop.  Here are four similarities that come to mind straight away.  Perhaps you can think of more.


  1. Vision – Each mechanic knows and understands that his role supports the overall goal of the pilot winning the race or at least crossing the finish line in record time.  Similarly in your business, whether you have staff working for you or you rely on outsourced service providers, everyone involved with you needs to understand that they support the vision and goals you have set for your business. This sense of perspective goes a long way in bolstering efficiency at every level.


  1. Focus – During the race, the team of mechanics stands ready for the pilot to arrive and everyone is focused on their specific task. Concentration levels are high and minds are alert, with everyone eager to do the best job they can. Focus is important in your business too.  Notice how easy it is for any of us to get distracted or be tempted to multi-task during our working time (see my recent article on distractions), resulting in not preforming as well as we could. Encouraging everyone working with you to manage their time, their energy and their tasks more efficiently can make a big difference to your business performance. Not only that, but your team will enjoy better job satisfaction and your clients will more readily become your raving fans. Every positive encouragement to be focused and on point is well worth it.


  1. Systems & Processes – The pit stop team is well trained in the processes designed to help fulfil the required tasks at the expected level of performance. They are also adequately equipped with the right tools to fulfil their roles properly.  As a result, they are confident that they can perform well. It is much the same in business. It has been said that systems run the business and that people run the systems. Is it true in your business?


One of my clients, Peter (not his real name), worked hard to do a complete overhaul and documenting of all the systems and processes for his 90+ employees.  Quite a lengthy and detailed job as you can well imagine.  When it was all finished and the time had come to share with the staff, Peter called me to say he was hesitant and afraid of getting negative feedback from his staff. 


I reassured him the best I could and encouraged him to go ahead. Later, Peter called me back. He was ecstatic. Contrary to his fear, his staff reacted very positively and even thanked him. They said they now clearly understood what was expected of them and felt relieved.  How telling is this? 


Systems and processes provide clarity of expectations, relieving staff of the unpleasant need to second-guess.  The right systems and processes impact the whole business, from staff morale and confidence all the way to customer satisfaction.


 4. Awareness – Each mechanic in the pit box is acutely aware of being one part of a bigger whole. Every person has an impact on the choreographed performance of the whole team. Harmony and teamwork are therefore of the utmost importance here. Each task should not be done in isolation but with the idea of supporting the rest of the team. So it is in business. No member of your staff is an island. One and all contribute to the success of your business. Harmonious teamwork deserves to be encouraged and rewarded.  What do you think?


How is it in your business?  Chances are there is room for improvement.  Isn’t it always the case?  This is the very reason I so enjoy covering these key aspects in my Growth Acceleration online workshops. These workshops offer much interaction between participants. They are very much about learning from one another in a positive environment as we cover essential keys to thrive and grow a business in a challenging environment.


Perhaps you would like to add to the list above.  What other thoughts come to mind when looking at the parallel between a harmonious pit stop and your business?  I would love to hear from you.


Olivier Carion


25 way to get more customers

Olivier Carion

Olivier Carion is a Sales Masters Guild Personal Business Mentor


With a real passion for the psychology of communication and the architecture that underpins accelerated growth, you’ll quickly realise why Olivier is the man who will help accelerate your business to a whole new level.


Find out more about Olivier on his Sales Masters Guild profile page.


Read more blogs from Olivier


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