For the past three years, Hillary Noble– North’s content marketing manager— has called tactics for the Women’s Seabags Sailing Team. Successfully sailing a J/24 with six women requires a strong team, both mentally and physically.
“We’ve come a long way since the 2017 Worlds,” Hillary says of the team’s first big regatta, where they won the Yaeger Women’s Trophy. “It’s been very rewarding in many ways.” Along the way, all six women have learned what it takes to be a great teammate, in order to make their next regatta more successful than the last.
“It’s so much fun to race with these amazing women!” she says. “They are powerful, and we keep getting better together—it’s a lot of fun.”
The team competes on the J/24 circuit year-round, and they are currently preparing for the 2019 World Championship in Miami, which they qualified for at the district one championships at Kittery Point Yacht Club, NH in 2018.
“It felt great to qualify on the water for this upcoming Worlds,” Hillary says. “This has opened two spots for other women’s teams to compete.”
“We are working hard this season,” she continues. “Making sure we have the right players for each event is really important. There will be plenty of opportunities to improve and we are always looking forward to the next regatta together.”
Hillary has collected five tips that form the basis for the team’s success. They apply equally well to her day job as part of the North marketing team—or to a mixed or men’s J/24 team. As Hillary points out, “We all want to win and get the most out of our experiences together.”
Hillary’s Tips for Team Building:
Focus on your individual job. Each team member can contribute to the team’s success. Many hands make things easier!
Know your team’s strengths, make a plan, communicate it early, and put your team in situations where they can shine.
Always work together towards a common goal. Any contribution by another set of eyes is valuable. If you see something, say something.
Help each other out. Any job on the boat can get difficult from time to time. Look out for your teammates and prevent them from failing.
Debrief after each race, but keep it short. Focus on the good things; admit mistakes, and learn something from your teammates. It’s all about growing together.
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