SWANSON, S. and KENT, A., 2015. Fandom in the workplace: Multi-target identification in professional team sports. Journal of Sport Management, 29(4), pp. 461-477.
Team identification has been researched extensively from the perspective of the consumer. The current study proposes that employees working in professional sport may also be fans of their respective teams, and provides insight on the role of team identification in the workplace environment. Over 1100 business operations employees from the top profession sports leagues in North America participated, and results indicate that dual targets of identification exist simultaneously in this setting. Strong support is provided for the discriminant validity between organizational and team identification. Beyond the more established effects of organizational identification, the results provide evidence that team identification independently predicts key outcomes such as commitment, satisfaction, and motivation. The results add to the literature by introducing the concept of a sports team as an additional target of identification in the organizational context.
This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Journal of Sport Management and the definitive published version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/JSM.2014-0132