Based on that description, Coach K would be classified as a relationship oriented leader. He looks for the best in the young men he coaches and strives to be a strong leader in their lives, not just on the court. The authors assumption, without personally knowing Coach K, would be that he would describe every person he met with a positive comment. Per Fiddler’s Theory, his leadership style would be assessed on his description of the person that he least preferred as a co- worker. This description would appear to coincide with an unstructured leadership position with little confrontation, which does not describe a college settable coach.
Coach Knight Coach Knight has been referred to as “The General” (Snood, Pepper, & Delayed, 2005, p. 1). Coach Knight in his own words “A coach has to be a tyrant, a benign benefactor, a parent. There’s a lot about coaching that’s like an actor. You’ve got to make yourself into different things at different times. Sometimes what you see is not really what you are” (Snood et al. , 2005, p. 4). Fiddler would be pleased with Coach Knight’s self-assessment. “Fiddler suggested that leaders may act differently in different situations” Fiddlers Contingency Theory’ 201 3, p. 1).
This author would assess Coach Knight’s behavior and assume he was not relationship oriented. By throwing chairs, kicking objects, yelling and grabbing players, he appears to have an anger management problem. He was an extremely successful coach because he was task oriented. He was rigid with his discipline and had no problem sitting players on the bench, including his own son. Coach Knight would be expected, per his behavior, to describe his least liked co-worker in terms that were negative. Coach Knight would disagree. He was not concerned with being liked but he had great passion for basketball and each one of the young men he coached.
His desire was to make each player the best they could be. Fiddler’s Model would assess Coach Knight as a strong leader in unfavorable conditions. He leads with power and authority. Conclusion Fiddler’s Contingency Theory is cut and dry, with no variables. Either a leader is task- oriented or relationship-oriented. Coach K is an excellent leader and works well under pressure. Fiddler would rate him as a relationship-oriented and not suited for his position. Coach Knight, per Fiddler’s theory would be task- oriented and perfectly suited to be a coach dealing with confrontation and stressful situation.