And what did they decide to do? They threw it. And unless you've been living under a rock, you know the results. The Seahawks threw an interception and the New England Patriots won Super Bowl 49.
In my opinion there are two great lessons that leaders can learn from the Seahawks unfortunate fate. Here they are:
Leadership Lessons From Super Bowl 49
#1: Play To Your Strengths. The Seahawks dominate teams with power running. Marshawn Lynch's nickname is Beast Mode. With the game on the line, they chose to run a play that went away from their strengths. And it cost them. BIG TIME. Too many times leaders and organizations try to do things they're not good at. As a leader, don't try to be something your not. Play to your strengths and you'll be more successful.
#2: Trust Your Team. Marshawn Lynch had over 100 yards rushing in the Super Bowl. Beast Mode averaged 5 yards per carry in the postseason. He consistently carried two to three Patriot defenders for extra yardage in the game. Yet with the game on the line, Pete Carroll and the Seahawks coaching staff didn't hand him the ball. As a leader, you have to trust your team to do their jobs. Train them. Equip them. Raise them up. Then release them to make an impact for your organization. Good leaders surround themselves with others who can get the job done. And then they trust their team by giving them the opportunity to succeed.
I've always loved sports because I believe the games and the competition teach us so much about life. Sometimes the lessons are fun. Sometimes they are painful. The same is true with leadership. Good leaders learn to avoid pain and loss for the organizations they lead by playing to their strengths and by trusting in their teams.