Every game is a championship game for us, so we’ll treat this one, the last one and the next one exactly the same. And that goes for our practices leading up to it as well.

--Pete Carroll, Head Coach of the Seahawks 2013/2014 Super Bowl team

two pyramids

In a decisive victory, the Seahawks outplayed the Denver Broncos by a Rocky Mountain mile. Even more so, they out-coached their opponents.

The base of Coach Pete Carroll’s “Win Forever” pyramid is labeled Belief System. From there, it moves through two middle levels before it reaches the pinnacle of the pyramid, which is labeled Performance. This approach has worked for Carroll, leading him and his team to victory in this year’s Super Bowl.

It’s an approach I particularly identify with, as one of my guiding principles is that success starts with having beliefs in line. Have a look at this video.


Beliefs drive emotions, emotions drive behaviors, and behaviors drive results. The difference between a sales coach and a sales manager is that managers start at the results and rarely, if ever, reach the beliefs. Coaches, on the other hand, start at beliefs, knowing that if those are in line, the results will follow.

Sales managers talk about results saying, “If you don't achieve the results, you're fired.” Some discuss behaviors and provide some direction on what to do, but they stop short of addressing the mindset and beliefs. If there’s a problem with results, their gut instinct is to talk about lowering prices, increasing features, changing land positions, etc.

On the other hand, coaches dig deep and get into the values. That’s what great coaching is all about. Carroll said, “The best way to advance something is to live it out, in everything you do.”

Now there’s a coach who is starting at the belief level who has created champions.

According to Carroll’s team members, the theory is catching on. In 2010, former starting quarterback Matt Hasselbeck said, “Everyone’s bought in.” He indicated that the “[philosophy] has become a mindset here.”

A manager works on circumstances and results while a coach improves beliefs, behaviors, confidence, processes, etc. One tries to make the situation easier for salespeople and the other tries to make the person better.

Why don’t more managers lead their teams like Super Bowl coaches--beginning with the beliefs and letting the behaviors (and wins!) stack up?

Learn more about markets featured in this article: San Francisco, CA.