Essay Example. Head Coach of the Navarro College Cheer Team

Published: 2023-07-13
Essay Example. Head Coach of the Navarro College Cheer Team
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  College Sport Personal leadership Leadership style
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1722 words
15 min read

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In the United States of America, in the state of Texas lies the small rural township of Corsicana with about 24,000 overwhelmingly conservative residents. The town is famous for its fruitcakes. Though few of the town's people get to join college, students from across America vie for the opportunity to join its Navarro College. It is because this is home to Monica Aldama, Head Coach of the Navarro College Cheer team. Under her leadership, the Navarro College Cheer team has won 14 National Championships since 2000 and has claimed its fifth National Cheerleaders Association Grand National Championship since 2012. Torre (2006) report that participation and winning the championship is an incredible feat and a remarkable example of leadership. The tournament is not only about winning but about preparation, courage, understanding, and the nurturing of people where winning is the result.


Leadership concepts have been a significant issue of concern to most behavioral scientists and understanding the composition and character of great leaders has not waned over time (Barrick, Mount, & Li2013). Researchers have developed theories and explanations of how leaders control followers (French and Simpson, 2006), and the theoretical construct of contemporary leadership explains the active role of leaders in organizational success (Baker, 2007). Still, the sharing of a common purpose provides a sense of direction and followership (Baker, 2007). McClesky(2014) proposes that emotional intelligence and its related competencies have alluded many researchers in the past, and this attribute might possess the kind of predictive validity for leadership effectiveness.

Bollich, Rogers, and Vazire (2015) also reflect upon individuals' self-reflection and present an insider view of the biased and unbiased perception of personal success. In support of these claims, French and Simpson (2006) state that most leaders show a tendency to downplay their efforts. This current presentation evaluates leadership qualities, thoughts, concepts, and practices as applicable to modern management theory and methods. This paper utilizes Monica Aldama's leadership endeavors to scrutinize the various aspects of leadership in varied scenarios explicitly, as depicted by the case study.

As the conscientious and visionary individual that she is, Monica Aldama works with the Navarro College Cheerleading team as their Head Coach. Her enthusiasm and personal drive have a spillover effect on those she leads. The following discussion is an analysis of Aldama's behavior as a leader and how her leadership orientation impacts followers as it relates to the available literature.

Managing Team Expectations

When the team convenes with fresh faces at the commencement of each year, Monica Aldama faces the challenge of managing the expectations of elite athletes. The cheerleaders have each been the very best in their previous club. There are 40 team members, but only 20 will have an opportunity to compete in Daytona, Florida, in the hopes of earning a national title.

Krauss, Hamid, and Ismail (2010) conducted a study to explore the relationship between task self-awareness and leadership. The researchers found that great leaders maintain team performance by relaying and making team members believe in the goals and objectives of the organization. Such leaders convey the vision and mission of the group and instill personal responsibility to attain the desired achievement (Dobbs & Do, 2019). Team success does not solely vest responsibility for the leader. These authors further stated that individuals have a role to play alongside their leader. Individual members have a part to play as well, and this concerns what the team can achieve.

It is a collective mandate to aspire to meet and surpass expectations, but not all situations turn out as expected. Belle (2014) utilizes self-persuasion to contain followers' expectations. Managers should employ excellent leadership skills by communicating that the team's success is paramount to individuals' success stories (Pidgeon, 2017). Everyone's effort is vital to such an undertaking. Clark, Denham-Vaughan, and Chidiac (2014) also support these assertions by emphasizing that the implications of performance should be spelled out for all participants to be aware. More so, inclusivity and adequate response to dynamic situations qualm team members' expectations and realign individual interests with organizational goals and objectives.

For effective management of team expectations, Monica works with the team's motivation and desire to compete in the National Championship. As a collective unit, the team's ambition is to participate in the competition, no matter the participants. Striking a balance between expectations and reality, Aldama blends and balances the technical aspects of cheerleading and soft principles of leadership. This predisposition is a playing field for Monica. She uses this motivation to garner mutual support and drive the cheerleaders to practice hard for the championship. In support of this assertion, Kim (2014) identified that the leadership role has a direct impact on followers' attitudes and performance.

Managing Non-Performance

Managing non-performance is a delicate leadership scenario that leadership mindfulness seeks to address (Reb, Narayanan & Chaturvedi, 2014). The authors define mindfulness as the ability of leaders to be in the present moment, fully aware and observant of situations to anticipate events. Being at par with current occurrences helps leaders respond in time to changing team performance and expectations (Geier, 2016). Monica Aldama is faced with a challenging leadership scenario when a team member fails to perform, and worse, fails to take responsibility for that lack of performance. However, as she was in the know of this development, Aldama was able to react promptly to the situation. She substituted the irresponsible non-performer and still maintained everyone's motivation to win the tournament.

Monica Aldama's manoeuvre is the above situation deploys a dictatorial leadership style. She replaces the non-performing team member with a substitute. With this leadership style, leaders make decisions based on their judgment irrespective of alternating or contrary opinions from team members (Geier, 2016). The head coach acknowledges that she has to make tough conversations and decisions, no matter the resultant impact to people in and outside the team. This impacts followers' determination and resilience to perform.

Leaders also have to adopt different strategies and leadership styles to solve organizational problems. To effectively employ a suitable strategy as per the dictates of the present moment or situation at hand, managers need to be fully aware of the current standing of the organization and the well-being of employees (Saetrevik & Haystad, 2017). Monica Aldama showcases a transactional leadership style when she substitutes the non-performer and later reinstates her position in the team. This action is an explicit example of a reward-and-punishment form of leadership as opinionated by the transactional leadership style.

Consequently, present mindfulness also applies to subordinates in the organization. Moreover, Saetrevik and Haystad (2017) state that leadership entails owning up to responsibilities and that a good leader should also be able to transfer responsibility to followers. At the same time, the leader should be able to instill ownership of tasks and activities to followers (Falls, 2016). Also, strict adherence to ethical codes of conduct and work ethics has long been considered a substrate of Type A Individuals.

Kaiser, Hogan, and Craig (2008) state that most researchers give credence to type A individuals to have a higher chance to succeed at leadership than their laid-back, risk-averse Type B individuals. This character is essential to Monica's leadership as her enthusiasm and charisma help her to motivate the cheerleaders to succeed in the championship. Also, Monica's call for substitution depicts her ability to take charge of situations and drive the team in the right direction, and this is a typical example of Type A individuals taking command of situations.

Leadership Trust

Kaiser and Hogan (2011) support the assertion that personality impacts a leader's style of leadership. Leaders such as Aldama display an approachable demeanor that bonds followers to their leaders' aspirations and dreams (Elenkov, 2002). This type of personality depicted by Monica enables leaders to instill trust in the team members. Ultimately, this character affects the cheerleaders' attitudes toward team performance. Such is showcased in the willingness and desire of Monica Aldama's team members and social friends' desires to emulate their Head Coach.

As with the traditional understanding of leadership, The Great Man Theory presents leadership as an innate quality (Hautala, 2016). Therefore, as Spector (2016) explains, members of society sought counsel only from their leaders. A member of the team confides in Monica a problem, which may be a breach of the team's ethical and moral code of conduct. The stated consequence of which is removal from the team. However, due to the level of trust and open communication that Aldama has inspired her followers, the team member decides to take this risk and seek Aldama's help to resolve her problem.

To further understand this aspect of leadership behaviour, the current undertaking considers Washington, Sutton, and Feild (2006) exploration of a leader's level of empathy, integrity, and competence. The researchers evaluated these aspects and attributes regarding servant leadership. They concluded that trust readily sprouts when the leader and the followers promptly communicate and are open to listen to each other.

Crisis Management

Carmeli, Dothan, and Boojihawon (2020) define crisis management as the process of dealing with unexpected and harmful events that have the potential to disrupt the normal functioning of activities and events. Transformational leadership helps leaders drive the organization through the crisis with the least fatalities and damage to organizational spirit and morale. As such, Humphrey (2002) advises that managers have to be vigilant and aware of their abilities and limitations to manage a crisis effectively. The acrobatic stunts required from a cheerleading team competing at this elite level results in several minor crises and one major crisis, arising during the National Competition. Hannah et al. (2013) credit the psychosomatic and leader's self-complexity to enabling the leader to steer the team through difficult situations. A leader's charisma also plays a crucial role in solidifying the team during times of crisis and re-energize the members towards excellent performance (Castelnovo, Popper &Koren, 2017). Watts, Steele, and Mumford (2019) express charismatic leadership as the ability to influence others' behavior through clear communication, persuasion, and personality. Monica's character and unwavering dedication to developing ability in the team endear her to her followers and ignite voluntary followership.

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Essay Example. Head Coach of the Navarro College Cheer Team. (2023, Jul 13). Retrieved from

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