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Contingency Theories - University of Idaho

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Contingency Theories
McGovern & Bernhard
McGovernPossible in sport? Examples…Why is this not done often?Hint: Who becomes coach?BernhardPossible in exercise settings? Examples…Take Home Message specific to Leadership?
Contingency Approaches
“The basic tenet of this focus was that behavior effective in some circumstances might be ineffective under different conditions” (p. 64).A 4-5thgrade soccer coach would behave much differently than the same coach at the Olympic level.
Contingency Approaches
Two qualities by the Leader MUST be present.Sliding scale of two behaviors.Most difficult one to achieve success at?
Fiedler’s Contingency Model
Premise was to critically examine the two largest variables for predicting potential success:Leader & OrganizationWhere in sport do we see this approach?Least Preferred Coworker (LPC) scale
Fiedler’s 3 Prongs of the Situation
Leader-Member relations:Members’ attitudes towards & acceptance of the leader.Task Structure:High or low = greater chance of success?Position Power:An evaluation of formal power.
Using Fiedler’s Model
Evaluate yourself as a leader accurately.Evaluate the situation accurately.Do these variables change?General research support, but correlation statistics only.LPC is simplistic and doesn’t account for everything.
Hersey & Blanchard Situational Theory
Evaluation is primarily based on follower readiness level. Then the leader alters her behavior to adjust to the level of the followers.This notion applies to both a team as a whole and individuals within a team.Where do we see this ‘tiered’ behavior from coach to follower in sport? Exercise?
Path-Goal Theory
Leader is to increase motivation of followers in order to achieve greater rewards.Path Clarification.Increased usage and congruence of rewards.Difficult or easy in exercise?3 sections to consider:LeaderBehaviorFollowers &SituationRewards
Path-Goal Theory: Leader Behavior
Supportive Leadership: concern for followers.Directive Leadership: specific instructions for followers. (color by number)Participative Leadership: followers’ opinions are sought and valued.Achievement-oriented Leadership: challenging goals and constant improvement to meet them.*Behavioralpatterns, NOT traits.
Path-Goal Theory: Situation
Personal characteristics of group members.Ability, skills, needs & motivations.Work environment.Task structure: defined vs. abstract.Formal authority: legitimate power + rules & policies.Group characteristics: educational level & relationships among members.
Path-Goal Theory: Rewards
How do followers get to rewards?What rewards do they want?Exercise examples…?
“focuses on varying degrees of participative leadership, and how each level of participation influences quality and accountability of decisions.” (p. 79)Premise: Leader faces a problem and must make a decision.
Vroom-Jago: Leader Participation Style
Continuum from solely autocratic to solely democratic.Utilize 7 questions to determine where on the continuum the situation is which in turn provides a prescription of behavior to follow.Initial problems with this approach?
Vroom-Jago: 7 Questions
Decision significance.Importance of commitment.Leader expertise.Likelihood of commitment.Group support for goals.Goal expertise.Team competence.
Vroom-Jago: Time vs. Development
Increasing the time to make a decision should prompt greater follower development.Which is paramount?Time or Development…Sport?Exercise?
Leadership ALWAYS Necessary?
Substitute: a situational variable that makes a certain leadership style unnecessary or redundant.Neutralizer: a situational variable that counteracts a leadership style and prevents the leader from acting in a certain way.





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Contingency Theories - University of Idaho