Team Psychology in Sports: Theory and Practice

By Stewart Cotterill | Go to book overview

4
ROLE CLARITY AND ROLE
ACCEPTANCE

Introduction

In successful sports teams each member of the team appears to ‘just know’ what their job is. The team as a whole understands what each player’s responsibilities are, and how all these responsibilities fit together into a team performance. Each player knows what is expected of them and what they can expect of their teammates. In any team environment, each member of the team will have a specific role to play in the operation of the team. This understanding of individual role responsibilities has been identified as one of the most important team variables in sport (Carron, 2003). Roles in this context are described as a set of expectations about behaviours for a position in a particular social context (Eys et al., 2006). As a result, these roles are a defining feature of groups and teams. Following extensive research in business settings, Belbin (1993) identified nine key roles including coordinator, implementer, specialist, resource investigator, and monitor evaluator. Belbin further contended that for a team to be successful a balance is required between these team roles. This approach suggests that team members should be carefully considered to ensure the right balance within the team. Within team environments evidence suggests that strategies to reduce role ambiguity and role conflict are essential to maintaining member morale and effective team functioning. It therefore appears crucial that developing clarity in the understanding and performance of roles is central to good team performance. This chapter will explore a range of factors that have a negative impact on role performance and consider a range of strategies that can be used to counter these highlighted factors.


Types of roles in sport

Two different approaches have been adopted in categorizing the types of roles that exist in teams. The first approach, by Bales and Slater (1955), suggested that the types of roles that exist in a team could be differentiated based upon the functions the roles serve.

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Team Psychology in Sports: Theory and Practice
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Figures viii
  • Tables ix
  • Preface x
  • Acknowledgements xiii
  • 1- Introduction 1
  • 2- Team Planning and Effectiveness 8
  • 3- Developing a Positive Team Environment 22
  • 4- Role Clarity and Role Acceptance 36
  • 5- Developing Effective Team Communication 48
  • 6- Cohesion in Sport 65
  • 7- Motivating the Team 78
  • 8- Managing Emotions in Team Sports 92
  • 9- Momentum in Sport 106
  • 10- Effective Team Leadership 120
  • 11- Mental and Emotional Recovery 133
  • Reference 146
  • Index 166
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