Performance leadership and management in elite sport: Recommendations, advice, and suggestions from national performance directors

Rachel Arnold, David Fletcher, Lindsay Molyneux

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to elicit recommendations, advice and suggestions
that can be used to enhance performance leadership and management in elite
sport. To garner such information, 13 national performance directors were
interviewed regarding the recommendations, advice and suggestions they had for
leaders and managers of national sports teams and the sport organisations in
which they operate. Five higher-order themes emerged for leaders and managers: establishing an approach, understanding roles within the team, developing contextual awareness, enhancing personal skills and strengthening relationships. There were also five higher-order themes for sport organisations: employing the most appropriate individual, creating the optimal environment, implementing systems and structures, developing an inclusive culture and providing appropriate support. As national governments place heightened importance on international sporting success, it is anticipated that the findings of this study will enable leaders, managers and sport organisations to more effectively address issues accompanying the leadership and management of Olympic programmes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-336
JournalEuropean Sport Management Quarterly
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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