Expression of Leadership in Sports Organizations: Attitude of Managers and Employees of Lithuanian Sports Organizations
Relevance of the topic. It is observed that leadership and its expression in various different environments are constantly updated. It is actively researched, empowered by it, learned, and efforts are made to understand how leadership emerges and develops (Damkuvienė et al. 2019). These needs do not bypass the sports sector, whose organizations operate in conditions of complete uncertainty in the current context of the COVID-19 pandemic. In such a context, leadership becomes an important condition for the effective operation and development of a sports organization.
The problem under consideration and the level of its research. The phenomenon of leadership has been studied by scientists (Andriani, Kesumawati, and Kristiawan 2018; Budrienė, Vaitiekienė, and Vaitiekus 2019; Damkuvienė et al. 2019; Hartley 2018; Holmes et al. 2021; Kulshreshtha and Sharma 2021; Miles and Scott 2019). The issue of leadership has been examined exclusively in the sports sector (Ajeigbe, Owolabi, and Alasinrin 2021; Hutchens et al. 2020; Macquet and Stanton 2021; Martinez-Moreno, Cavas-Garcia, and Diaz-Suarez 2021; Megheirkouni 2017; Sabaliauskas 2017; Stewart et al. . 2020). Most of the time, research on the expression of leadership chooses to apply quantitative methods, which prevents a deeper experience of both managers of sports organizations and their subordinates in the field of leadership. Therefore, this article aims to refine and present insights based on qualitative research in the field of leadership communication.
The goal is to evaluate the expression of leadership in sports organizations after examining the theoretical assumptions of leadership.
- To reveal the theoretical assumptions of expression of leadership in sports organizations;
- Determine the characteristic and desirable qualities of a leader of a sports organization;
- To refine the leadership functions in sports organizations;
- To identify obstacles limiting leadership in sports organizations and to reveal the potential for strengthening leadership.
Quantitatively, the expression of leadership in sports organizations is evaluated in various aspects, but there is a lack of qualitative research in this area. This circumstance prompted the choice of a qualitative strategy for the study of leadership expressions in sports organizations. The qualitative strategy is applied in accordance with the following methodological provisions: social reality is perceived and interpreted individually; each individual actively creates reality based on personal experience; social reality is different for different individuals, but it is shared through interaction with other individuals (Damkuvienė et al., 2019, p. 40). The block of questions for the assessment of leadership expression is formulated according to Winston's (2004) insights about leadership expression.
Conclusions. Summarizing the results of the empirical study of the expression of leadership in sports organizations, it can be stated that the ideal leader in a sports organization is usually associated with focus, motivation, connections with sports, and flexibility. In the opinion of most of the representatives of the sports sector, existing leaders are characterized by motivation, flexibility, activity, and sharing of responsibilities. Leaders in sports organizations usually perform functions of planning, task allocation, control and monitoring, and organization, which traditionally fall within the content of the concept of leadership. It has been determined that there is potential for improving leadership in the country's sports organizations.
Keywords: leader, transformational leadership, shared leadership, sport, motivation.
Copyright (c) 2022 Author(s). Published by Lithuanian Sports University.
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