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"What factors contribute to make a good leader and how might your styles of leadership vary to be successful when involved in individual, racquet and team activities?"

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Introduction

jo"What factors contribute to make a good leader and how might your styles of leadership vary to be successful when involved in individual, racquet and team activities?" Good leaders can come in many forms. Leadership in sport is the process of influencing team members to work hard towards team goals. Leaders can either be task-oriented or person-oriented. Task-oriented leaders are most interested in training, performance and winning. Person-oriented leaders are more interested in the relationships between team members. Fiedler identified these types of leader and in Fiedler's model, "Leadership effectiveness is the result of interaction between the style of the leader and the characteristics of the environment in which the leader works." Great sporting leaders are both, but lean more towards being task-oriented as will be shown later. Leaders can be a person within the team, the captain, or a coach. They can be prescribed leaders where they have been put into a position of power by a sporting committee-such as Sven Goran Eriksson as England manager by FIFA, or emergent leaders, where a person rises naturally from the group-this is not so common within elite sport. ...read more.

Middle

Good leaders, coaches or managers can use their knowledge of the sport and their tactical awareness to select the right strategy for the right situation, even under great pressure. Their knowledge also means they are good teachers and are well prepared. Good coaches know that sometimes they will have to change what they originally planned due to changing circumstances, so flexibility and having an open mind are crucial to leadership. Alex Ferguson, an autocratic, task orientated leader is an example of a leader who possesses these qualities, he manages to motivate Manchester United whether they are top of the table, or on a rare losing streak, and he can change his game plan to adapt to the situation. England middle-distance runner, Kelly Holmes's coach also has to make important decisions with the athlete on how she will run the race. Whether she should go out strong and run from the front, or sit back and rely on a sprint finish, all based on factors such as her fitness, the opponents and the situation. ...read more.

Conclusion

Choosing the right person to be team captain is vital. This is why it is so important for a coach to get to know each of the players as well as possible. Paula Radcliffe's coach is also her husband, dietician, motivator and many more roles. For the athlete herself, her coach playing all these roles can be good for her career, as he knows what makes her perform to the maximum. This is a very good example of how a good leader as a coach must know their athlete well, this is especially important in individual sports, such as tennis or cross country, as motivation must come from the athlete and coach only, there is no team around to help build moral. Overall, good leaders have a great knowledge of their sport and are able to commit 100% to their athlete or team. Good leaders are good at communication and motivation, gaining and giving respect and are enthusiastic and are passionate about their sport. 10/05/2007 ...read more.

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