Life is full of unexpected twists and turns and in running my own business I have learned to embrace the opportunities they create. Today I met with Pete Woolford who runs Black N Rounds, a specialist Motorsport tyre company based in Silverstone. Pete has extensive experience of the world of motorsport having worked within it for many years, and he offered to help me gain an insight into the industry and its marketing needs. The advice he gave me was of course extremely useful, but there was an unexpected and exciting twist at the end of the meeting. As I was about to leave he asked if I would like to look at ‘The cars’, which turned out to be collection of classic Porsches amongst other things, but most interestingly of all for me… a collection of Marussia’s F1 cars from the last few years!
Not only was I able to see them up close, but I actually climbed into one of Timo Glock’s cars, which literally gave me a whole new perspective. David Coulthard in his BBC commentary of F1 races always tries to explain how limited the view is from the cockpit and I thought I understood just how limited it was, but believe me until you try it you haven’t got a clue! I was leaning back far more than I expected reducing my field of vision even further, the view through the wing mirrors was barely more than just the rear tyres and you can see from the picture above that the view in front isn’t exactly panoramic either! You can’t see the nose-cone, the road, the front wing or much of the wheels!
But this wasn’t the only change in perspective I gained today: After struggling to get out of the car I found out that all F1 drivers need to be able to exit their car in under five seconds in race conditions. How they do that after two hours of physically and mentally exhausting racing, in a sweat-sodden race suit is beyond me, I think took me nearly 20 seconds and I had only been in it for a couple of minutes! I am sure that I can’t be the only bloke who despite his age deep down holds a fantasy of ‘I could do that’, but if I can’t even get in and out of the car effectively surely the idea of me being a F1 driver is even more in the realms of fantasy than I thought.
Just because it’s made to look ‘easy’
Sportsmen in every discipline practise for many years to achieve what appears to be an overnight success, and they can make things that others would find impossible look effortless. Likewise in business, expertise and experience help make difficult things look easy and all of us have skills that others do not, so I would urge you all to gain as many differing perspectives from the other experts around you and not to try to be jack of all trades. Delegate to those who can do it better, faster, cheaper (or all three!)
I am currently seeking to meet with more motorsport companies to gain an even greater insight into what they might need in terms of marketing and graphic design, so if someone you know might be able to spare me an hour to help me I would love to hear from you. It will not be a sales call, I simply want to learn the facts rather than rely on my intuition.
That way I’ll be able to target my future marketing more effectively and who knows what other exciting twists and turns I may encounter along the way… which might give me a whole new perspective yet again?