‘No dickheads’- Toto Wolff sheds light on the disciplinary policy of Mercedes which created a warm and sincere environment in the team.
Mercedes is probably among the most sincere teams in the paddock, that is why Christian Horner said “That’s why we upset Wolff so much,” when he was discussing Red Bull’s energetic and party style nature.
Coming onto Mercedes’ working style, Toto Wolff has claimed that Mercedes boast its ‘No dickheads’ policy, which somehow has generated a culture of collaboration and sociability at Brackley that has also been crucial to Mercedes success and stability.
“There is a lot of camaraderies, I would call it,” said the Austrian to Will Buxton. “I had a weird situation in 2015 when I moved to the UK and for my birthday on January 12th my wife Suzie said ‘who do you want to invite?’.
“The only people I could imagine inviting were my close confidants in the team. We ended up having dinner with 10 or more colleagues of mine with their wives, and that shows how close we were straight from the get-go.”
Wolff said he harboured a genuine interest in his colleagues, an attentiveness that permeates through the team. “I have a real interest in the people,” he added.
“I like to spend a lot of time with them, understanding their struggles, their worries and also what motivates and challenges them.” he further added.
“We care for each other in the team and I think this is being felt. But it’s not all schmoozing and we are all so happy with each other, there’s also a way of coping with pressure.”
“It’s a safe environment. We have no hire-and-fire policy, we don’t blame each other. It can be heated, and that’s very important, diversity of opinion, but it never leads to a situation where we fall out with each other.”
“If we fall out, that has been at the beginning, that means the characters didn’t fit each other.”
‘No dickheads’ policy taken from All Blacks
Speaking on the subject, Wolff said that the environment in Mercedes is highly inspired by New Zealand’s Rugby team, which has simple philosophies when it comes to discipline.
“We have a sports psychologist in the team called Ceri Evans who is also the sports psychologist for the All Blacks,” said the 48-year-old team boss.
“One of the mottos of the All Blacks is ‘No dickheads’! And we kind of took that philosophy to us as well.” he concluded.