This study examined the relationship between the discrepancy between preferred and perceived leadership and athletes' satisfaction. The five preferred and perceived leadership behaviors assessed were Training and Instruction, Democratic Behavior, Autocratic Behavior, Social Support, and Positive Feedback. Four facets of satisfaction were measured: Satisfaction with Individual Performance, Satisfaction with Team Performance, Satisfaction with Leadership, and Satisfaction with Overall Involvement. The athletes were selected from sports differentiated on the basis of task variability and/or task dependence. Discrepancy in leadership was computed by subtracting the perception of a specific dimension of leader behavior from preference for such behavior. The results showed that discrepancy in leadership for athletes in the various sports was associated with three measures of satisfaction: Satisfaction with Team Performance, with Leadership, and with Overall Involvement. Further, Training and Instruction, and Positive Feedback were the most common dimensions of leader behavior affecting athletes' satisfaction.
The author wishes to express his gratitude to A.V. Carron for his helpful suggestions and comments.
Requests for reprints should be sent to P. Chelladurai, Faculty of Physical Education, University of Western Ontario, London, Canada N6A 3K7.