Tale of two coaches
Grand Canyon University
August 27, 2011
When it comes to leadership and management, Coach K and Coach Knight are undeniably the two most respected and committed college basketball coaches in the United States. But the one thing that sets the two apart is their leadership styles. Coach Knight chooses to lead by intimidation and Coach K choice is to use positive reinforcement. Both leadership styles have produced great results with a win-win record at both colleges. Leadership is a process in which the leader has to influence their follower’s in order to achieve a set of common goals, and in these two cases it’s to win basketball games.
Bobby Knight, also known as "The General," is the head coach at Texas Tech University. He's a fiery, in-your-face taskmaster who leads through discipline and intimidation, which some critics say goes too far. Knight was fired from a long career at Indiana University for grabbing a student, and prior to that he was filmed clutching one of his own players by the neck. And then there was the infamous incident during a game when Knight tossed a folding chair across the court to protest a referee's call.
Mike Krzyzewski, also known as Coach K, leads the men's basketball program at Duke University. Instead of fear, Krzyzewski relies heavily on positive reinforcement, open and warm communication, and caring support. For Coach K, "It's about the heart, it's about family, it's about seeing the good in people and bringing the most out of them.
To become a great leader one must possess the traits needed to create the desire for the followers to take directions from the leader to meet the ultimate goal. Both coaches displayed a high level of drive, motivation, integrity, confidence, and task knowledge to which in return produced a high level of achievement. When correlating the power bases to each coach, Coach K would have to be classified as having referent