“We can be very proud of our achievements last week in Malaysia, but there is no room for complacency”.
Those were the words that Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport, told his team after winning their second race in a row in the 2014 Formula 1 Championship Season.
It’s hard not to feel some ambivalence when seeing these two statements juxtaposed together.
Yes, celebrate… but don’t get comfortable.
On one hand, you can imagine how this might have been an instant buzz-kill for a team that surely couldn’t help but feel an overwhelming sense of relief and contentment after winning first place in a highly competitive sport.
On the other hand, there’s something inspiring and energizing about the idea of there being no room for complacency — presumably because there is still so much more to be done, to be achieved.
Not only did Mercedes end up winning the World Driver’s Championship that year — they’ve won it every year since.
In all that time, Wolff’s messaging to his team and the media has remained remarkably consistent: Yes we’re proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish, but we are not even close to finished.