Team Psychology in Sports: Theory and Practice

By Stewart Cotterill | Go to book overview

10
EFFECTIVE TEAM LEADERSHIP

Introduction

Sometimes in sport winning is not about having the best group of players, but about how well those players function as a team. A central aspect of this relates to the leadership of the team. Effective leadership can make all the difference in big games when the pressure is on.

Sports leadership research has a long tradition of borrowing models from industrial and organizational psychology (Rieke et al., 2008). This is partly because sports teams are thought to possess many of the same characteristics as business and work teams. These characteristics include a specific group of personnel, a planned programme of activity, and a division of labour to achieve specific goals (Rieke et al., 2008). Group leadership is probably the role most associated with group effectiveness (Carron et al., 2005). In relation to sports teams and leadership, the majority of written sources focus on the roles and impact of both the coach and manager on the team. The role of the captain as a leader, while no less important, has received far less attention, as have the roles of ‘informal’ leaders within the team. There are many examples of great leaders in sport. But, interestingly, the factors that made them great appear to differ from case to case. Some great leaders are fantastic at leading by example, others have the capacity to inspire and motivate others, while others still are fantastically organized and manage the structure and environment effectively. Sir Clive Woodward is acknowledged as being a very good leader. He built a very effective structure that underpinned the England rugby union team winning the Rugby world cup for the first time in 2003. However, whilst effective in this environment, a subsequent change of sport to soccer with Southampton Football Club proved to be very unsuccessful, as did a return to rugby union with the British and Irish Lions and their tour to South Africa. As a result, understanding the situational factors that impact upon leadership appears to be as important as the personal characteristics of the leader.

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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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