Leadership and Coaching Philosophies From Superbowl-Bound Pete Carroll

Tatyana Sussex | January 31, 2014

left Image


To celebrate the Super Bowl this weekend (and our hometown team GO HAWKS!), we decided to dive into Pete Carroll’s coaching style because it’s non-traditional – kind of like LiquidPlanner. Over the years, Pete Carroll has received a bit of flak for his positive coaching style. Instead of ruling the team with an iron fist, army sergeant style, he became known as a “player’s coach” – someone who put his players first and dared to be supportive, compassionate and even, as some reporters put it, rah-rah or touchy-feely. Who’s laughing – or should we say cheering – now? Let’s have a look into what makes this coach of the year tick. Who knows what any of us managing projects and leading teams might learn?

Pete Carroll’s coaching mantas and tenants:

  • Always Compete
  • Create an environment that supports individuality and lets people be their unique selves while still being accountable to the team.
  • Be an excellent communicator.
  • Care about your employees – and show it.
  • Nurture employee development.
  • Commit to building a cohesive corporate culture, one that motivates current employees and encourages others to want to join it.
  • Be competitive, have fun, show lots of love.
  • Cultivate champions. (Read 8 Way Pete Carroll Cultivates Champions.)

Seahawks players on his coaching philosophy:

  •  “This lets the rest of the National Football League and the rest of the coaching world know that his philosophy works . . . You can love a guy up and [still] create an environment that’s conducive to winning. He’s the first coach to do it that way, to have a college-type atmosphere in the pros.” – Michael Robinson
  • “I don’t think anybody thought his system could work . . . It shows you can win with positivity, with having a great mindset. They say you have to be a hard coach to win in this league, but that’s not who he is. We love it.” – Richard Sherman

Pete Carroll on his coaching philosophy

  • “It comes down to taking care of the people in your program and making them the best they can be – not giving up on them and never failing to be there for them.”
  •  “[It’s] a way that you can help people find heights that they might not have found otherwise.”
  • “There is no offensive play calling or defensive scheme that is going to win championships for you. It is how you can adapt and adjust to making the schemes work. The only way you can do that is to have a strong belief system.”

Who are you rooting for this weekend? What do you think of Pete Carroll’s coaching style? Leave us a comment and GO ‘HAWKS!