Relationship between Servant Leadership Attributes and Trust in Leaders: A Case of Sport Instructors in South Korea

Corresponding Authors:

Boyun Woo
Associate Professor
Endicott College
School of Sport Science
376 Hale Street
Beverly, MA 01915
Phone: 978-232-2431
Email: bwoo@endicott.edu

Relationship between Servant Leadership Attributes and Trust in Leaders: A Case of Sport Instructors in South Korea

ABSTRACT
In a highly competitive fitness industry in South Korea, leaders’ role has become more important in retaining competent sport instructors for the survival of the organization. In particular, the leadership style the manager exhibits is crucial in building the sport instructors’ trust in their leaders. This quality relationship between the leader and the followers, in turn, help the competent sport instructors to stay in the organization and perform at their best. Based on Barbuto and Wheeler’s (2006) servant leadership model, the purpose of the study was to investigate the relationship between different servant leadership attributes and trust in leaders among sport instructors in South Korea. The servant leadership attributes included were altruistic calling, emotional healing, wisdom, persuasive mapping, and organizational stewardship. The data were collected from 219 certified sport instructors in South Korea during the national sport instructor certification training using a paper pencil self-administered survey method. The results of multiple regression analysis demonstrated that all the servant leadership attributes together explained 75.3% of the variance in trust in leaders. Of the five attributes studied, three attributes, altruistic calling, persuasive mapping, and organizational stewardship, had a significant association with trust in leaders. The findings of the study guide sport managers on what attributes they need to focus on to gain trust from their followers. In addition, the results of the study could serve as a vital tool to hire an effective sport manager and to develop a leadership training program for sport managers.
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