Promoting shared meanings in group memberships: a social identity approach to leadership in sport

Matthew J. Slater*, Pete Coffee, Jamie B. Barker, Andrew L. Evans

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

The purpose of this review is to demonstrate the applicability of a social identity approach to leadership in sporting contexts. A social identity approach to leadership contends that leaders and group members are connected through feeling a sense of belonging and emotional attachment to their group. The present review (1) outlines the theoretical underpinnings of social identity theory, (2) reflects on the four principles of social identity leadership and applies them to sport, (3) contrasts social identity leadership with current leadership theories, and (4) provides suggestions for future research investigating a social identity approach to leadership in sport. Accordingly, the review illustrates how an appreciation of the social context and group members’ values allow leaders to mobilise – enlist the motivation and abilities of – athletes to achieve the leader’s vision. A social identity approach to leadership has the potential to extend understanding of leadership in sport by emphasising the role of groups and context in leadership.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)672-685
Number of pages14
JournalReflective Practice
Volume15
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Sep 2014

Keywords

  • coaching
  • group dynamics
  • self-categorisation theory
  • social identity theory
  • vision

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy

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