How to create a winning team

Lessons from Formula 1

The Formula 1 season has us all gripped at Worldpack. We are invested in the highs and the lows, the twists and turns and the intense competition between teams.

It occurred to us that there is a lot to learn from Formula 1 – creating winning teams is no accident. It’s an intentional outcome of great decisions, the right blend of people and a well-oiled machine where everyone is crystal clear on their roles.

At Worldpack, creating a winning team is essential to what we do. And we think there’s a lot that Formula 1 can teach us about teamwork. And right now, creating a close-knit team is essential for retail teams to thrive. Across Europe, the number of workers leaving, or planning to leave, their jobs is still incredibly high.


Communication is key

Aside from the ear-splitting noise of the Formula 1 track, the other sound you’ll hear is constant communication between all the team involved. The driver has a direct line to their race engineer, to allow for a back-and-forth of both race and car insight. This is essential so that the driver is clear on all the small details that can have an impact on the race outcomes.

But what you’ll also see in the background is a pit full of people staring at TV screens, connected to headsets and feeding a constant stream of data to the pit crew so that they know exactly what’s needed when the car comes into the pit. That 20 strong pit crew only has 2.5 seconds to get it right, so an error in communication could cost valuable seconds and the race result.

It can be easy to overlook just how much information you need to relay to your retail teams, but transparency and open communication channels can have a huge impact on your performance. Digital workplace platform, Yoobic, says that poor internal communications and disengaged employees have a 60% higher error rate than engaged employees.

Poor communication is costly and potentially damaging to your retail reputation.

At Worldpack, we put an enormous focus on internal communications to ensure our customers get Service with Guts. Every account has an Account Manager who is the main point of contact and works as a conduit for a whole team of specialists working on the customer’s behalf. The account manager makes it a point to understand future business aims and filter that back to the team so we can ensure we are always on the look-out for products and solutions that will help customers save costs and be more efficient.

Define your roles

Without doubt, one of Formula 1’s resounding successes is that the team knows exactly what their role is and what is expected of them. Without this, the pit team would be a mess and things would spiral out of control. The Formula 1 team spins around each other like a picture-perfect carousel, in sync and in no doubt about the importance of their role within the bigger picture.

Could the same be true of your retail team?

Are your retail teams clear on their roles and what is expected of them? And what happens when one person isn’t delivering against that?

The recent State of the Global Workplace: 2022 Report study by Gallup shows that employee engagement in Europe is the worst in the world, with just 14% reporting engagement at work.

Getting clear on roles, according to Gallup, is essential to improving this. “It's about having clear expectations, feeling connected to and supported by your team, and finding purpose in your work.”

Defining roles and communicating expectations has the power to transform performance and retail results. Gallup reported that “engaged teams in Europe are significantly more productive and profitable than disengaged ones.”

During the pandemic, the need for constant communications across retail teams was crucial with ever-shifting conditions. But is this still the case for your organisation or have you slipped back to working in silos of information?

Working towards a common goal

All that teamwork comes down to one thing in Formula 1. The success of the driver. And while it might be the driver that takes all the credit, that common goal keeps the whole team moving in a synchronised direction towards a clear goal.

From the pit team and engineers to the marketing and promotional departments – everything points towards driver success and underpins the aim of the entire team.

And in retail, our connected network of stores (online or bricks and mortar), warehouses, marketing, procurement, HR and so on – should also all be leading to the same goal.

If you’re missing a clear goal, or you have one but it’s not being communicated, it’s essential to reset and place it at the heart of all your teams. Keeping everyone moving to the same purpose, whether it’s sustainability, customer satisfaction or growth in key product lines is crucial. This will ensure that your teams are clear on their purpose and can do their roles with meaning.

We’re here to help you create a winning retail team. From sustainably sourced products to strategy-led procurement, we can help you win in the fast-paced retail race. Speak to our team on +31 (0) 88 494 20 80 or email us at

David Mines
Business Development Director

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