Believing in ‘us’: exploring leaders’ capacity to enhance team confidence and performance by building a sense of shared social identity

Fransen, Katrien, Haslam, S. Alexander, Steffens, Niklas K., Vanbeselaere, Norbert, De Cuyper, Bert and Boen, Filip (2015) Believing in ‘us’: exploring leaders’ capacity to enhance team confidence and performance by building a sense of shared social identity. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 21 1: 89-100. doi:10.1037/xap0000033


Author Fransen, Katrien
Haslam, S. Alexander
Steffens, Niklas K.
Vanbeselaere, Norbert
De Cuyper, Bert
Boen, Filip
Title Believing in ‘us’: exploring leaders’ capacity to enhance team confidence and performance by building a sense of shared social identity
Journal name Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1076-898X
1939-2192
Publication date 2015-03-06
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1037/xap0000033
Open Access Status
Volume 21
Issue 1
Start page 89
End page 100
Total pages 12
Place of publication Washington, DC United States
Publisher American Psychological Association
Language eng
Abstract The present study examined the impact of athlete leaders’ perceived confidence on their teammates’ confidence and performance. Male basketball players (N = 102) participated in groups of 4. To manipulate leaders’ team confidence, the appointed athlete leader of each newly formed basketball team (a confederate) expressed either high or low team confidence. The results revealed an effect of team confidence contagion such that team members had greater team confidence when the leader expressed high (rather than low) confidence in the team’s success. Second, the present study sought to explain the mechanisms through which this contagion occurs. In line with the social identity approach to leadership, structural equation modeling demonstrated that this effect was partially mediated by team members’ increased team identification. Third, findings indicated that when leaders expressed high team confidence, team members’ performance increased during the test, but when leaders expressed low confidence, team members’ performance decreased. Athlete leaders thus have the capacity to shape team members’ confidence—and hence their performance—in both positive and negative ways. In particular, by showing that they believe in “our team,” leaders are able not only to make “us” a psychological reality, but also to transform “us” into an effective operational unit.
Keyword Athlete leaders
Collective efficacy
Team identification
Social identity approach
Sport psychology
Leadership
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
 
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 20 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 23 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Tue, 17 Mar 2015, 20:09:24 EST by Niklas Steffens on behalf of School of Psychology