Motivation To Give Back
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  • 1. Motivation to Give Back: Attributes of Professional Football Players who Support Nonprofit Organizations by Autumn L. Burton DELORES CAUTHEN, Ph.D., Faculty Mentor and Chair DAVID WITT, Ph.D., Committee Member, Specialization Faculty DANA GONZALES, Ph.D., Committee Member, Research Faculty
  • 2. CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
    • Though the body of research on sports philanthropy continues to grow, there is limited research on understanding what motivates professional football players to give their resources or time to nonprofit organizations.
    • The purpose of this basic interpretive qualitative study was to discover the motivation within professional football players in order to evaluate whether or not Fritz Hieder’s Attribution theory can be applied to the decisions athletes make to support nonprofit organizations.
      • Heider (1958) believed that people act on the basis of their beliefs.
      • The principle of attribution theory as it relates to motivation is that a person's own attributions determine the amount of effort the person will expend on that activity (Jones, 1972).
    • The research study addressed the key issues in determining the motivation behind why professional athletes support nonprofit organizations and to increase understanding of the context in which giving occurs in the world of sports philanthropy.
  • 3. CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
  • 4. Research Questions
    • Central Research Question
      • How do professional football players, who have formed their own nonprofit organizations, interpret motivation for forming their own nonprofit organization or becoming involved with an existing nonprofit organization?
    • Corollary Research Question
      • What provides motivation for the professional football players who have formed their own nonprofit organizations to give back to the community?
      • How do professional football players define motivation?
      • How does motivation change based on the attributions of professional football players who have formed their own nonprofit organizations?
      • What are the common themes in the motivational factors for professional football players forming their own nonprofit organization?
  • 5. Significance
    • The significance of the research study will give sports philanthropic organizations critical information to fulfill their missions as well as assist in the understanding of giving patterns of their clients' as well as advance scientific knowledge of giving. The study has the potential to enhance nonprofits' effectiveness and sustainability in sports philanthropy.
  • 6. CHAPTER 2: Literature Review
    • The data analysis will assist nonprofit professionals in developing fundraising strategies and leveraging celebrity status for the organizations they operate. Nonprofit professionals and Sports Philanthropist who are aware of the attributional process and the types of internal and external attributions can better understand the motivation of others and the motivation of the organization leader.
  • 7. Attribution theory
    • Attribution theory focuses on the ability and motivation for action. The behavior can be caused by a feeling of obligation or a sense that the person “should” participate in some sort of behavior? Attribution theory assumes that people are systematic and logical; therefore if nonprofit organizations are able to dictate and understand the behavioral patterns habits can be altered to benefit the organizations campaigns (Schmidt and Weiner, 1988).
  • 8. Purpose
    • While motivation to give back to the community has been extensively studied, only recently has sports philanthropy been a topic of interest and focus. The literature on sports philanthropy extends the research on corporate philanthropy and is aimed at gaining insight into what it is, how it works, and the various methods of giving.
  • 9. Research Design
    • According to Merriam (2002), a basic interpretative qualitative study is used when the goal is to understand how participants make meaning of a situation or a phenomenon. In the Qualitative research method the researcher is able to determine how people feel, and what they think and the observer is concerned with the quality of experience shared by the subjects (Taylor & Bogdan, 1998).
    • Heath (1997) suggests that qualitative researchers use the words of selected individuals to describe and interpret some human phenomenon.
  • 10. CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY
    • The purpose of the interviews presents the ideas of the participants regarding the phenomenon of interest.
    • The structured interview protocol asked general questions about motivation to give back to the community followed by more specific probe questions which allowed the development of a central theme.
  • 11. Sampling Design
    • The survey sample was drawn from athletes who are either currently on the roster for the National Football League or listed on the retired player’s association roster for the National Football League.
    • Data saturation can be reached when the researcher is no longer hearing new information.
    • The data was collected through audiotapes from the interviews.
    • The files for each interview were placed in a database in order to analyze qualitative data.
  • 12. Field Testing
    • A panel of experts evaluated the interview questions for content and consequential validity.
    • Based on the results of the field test, the interview questions were reviewed for clarity and adjusted accordingly.
  • 13. Data Analysis Procedures
    • For ease of understanding, the data was presented in a category presentation in different tables.
    • The tables are based on broad themes that tie specific categories together.
    • The columns in the tables list the categories that emerged from analysis of the professional football players.
    • The broad themes that are identified and the categories that contribute to them, serve to expand and refine the understanding of motivation to form a nonprofit organization.
  • 14. Expected Findings
    • The findings of the research study will offer considerable assistance to nonprofit leaders of newly formed nonprofit organizations involved in sports philanthropy.
    • One expectation was that personal experience will be the number one reason for people supporting nonprofit organizations.
    • A discovery of the attributes that each athlete possesses was discussed in order to develop common themes that provide guidance to sports philanthropist.
  • 15. Relevance to Sports Philanthropy
  • 16. Ethics
    • Each participant was fully informed of the nature of the study and their involvement in the study. The purpose was to gain an understanding of people’s experiences and did not anticipate any harm.
    • The participants had the right to not participate or refuse to participate at any time.
    • The information that was collected from the participants was kept confidential and used only for the purposes of the research study.
  • 17. CHAPTER 4: DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS
    • This chapter presented the data collection and the data analysis for professional footballs players who formed or support nonprofit organizations.
      • Invitations to participate in the interview were sent out to 21 athletes.
      • Of the 21 athletes, 12 responded to the invitation. This research study included 10 of the 12 participants who were available to participate.
      • Each athlete was interviewed individually in a location of their choice; 7 of 10 selected the privacy of their home and the other three selected a bookstore
    • Merriam’s (2002) basic interpretative qualitative study was the guiding model followed throughout this analysis
      • Strategy suited this study because the nature of this strategy allowed inductive analytic strategies for data analysis
  • 18. CHAPTER 4: DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS
    • Central Research Question
      • How do professional football players, who have formed their own nonprofit organizations, interpret motivation for forming their own nonprofit organization or becoming involved with an existing nonprofit organization?
    • Corollary Research Question
      • What provides motivation for the professional football players who have formed their own nonprofit organizations to give back to the community?
      • How do professional football players define motivation?
      • How does motivation change based on the attributions of professional football players who have formed their own nonprofit organizations?
      • What are the common themes in the motivational factors for professional football players forming their own nonprofit organization?
  • 19. CHAPTER 4: DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS
  • 20. CHAPTER 4: DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS
    • The findings presented here help assess the giving elements and the attributes that each athlete shared on giving to nonprofit organizations.
    • Each theme and category that is revealed provides a more detailed look into motivation on why athletes decide to give back to the community.
    • The findings detailed in this chapter helps the nonprofit sector understand the attributes that each of the athletes shared on giving to charity.
    • The personal lived experiences of each athlete were revealed through all elements of the data collection, data analysis, and results.
  • 21. CHAPTER 5: FINDINGS, CONCLUSION, RECOMMENDATIONS
    • Understanding the giving patterns of major donors can be an important aspect for both nonprofit professionals and scholars. The research helps to understand the key question of : what motivates athletes to give back to the community.
    • Additional analysis helps to answer the questions of why this inquiry matters to the philanthropic community.
    • It was seen that ways to give back to the community can be as varied as the many causes to give back to.
    • Although it was interesting to understand the motivations of each athlete, this research speaks to the attributes that are seen in major donors.
  • 22. CHAPTER 5: FINDINGS, CONCLUSION, RECOMMENDATIONS
    • While some previous studies done by Weiner (1986) and Mitchell and Daniels (2003) have expound on the motivational theories and the uniqueness of wealth in philanthropy, the research presented here helps to separate the two and provide a total outlook on why people give back to the community.
    • The focus on athletes details a unique set of characteristics for a growing segment of philanthropy.
    • Substantial research exists on the charity of giving, and volunteerism but most of it focus on giving from a community focus and not from a sports philanthropic view.
  • 23. CHAPTER 5: FINDINGS, CONCLUSION, RECOMMENDATIONS
    • Attribution theory (Heider, 1958) has played a huge role in defining motivation and can continue to scientifically provide evidence for nonprofit professionals as well as provide an integrative mechanism for corporate and sports-philanthropy research.
    • To recall the relevance of the research, it was noted by the Center on Philanthropy (2007) that understanding why people give can benefit both the supporter and the nonprofits.
    • This research specifically, reveals the dynamics of sports philanthropy and motivation by understanding the attributes of professional athletes in the nonprofit sector.
  • 24. References
    • Heath, A. W. (1997, March). The proposal in qualitative research [41 paragraphs]. The Qualitative Report 3(1).
    • Heider, F. (1958). The psychology of interpersonal relations . New York: Wiley.
    • Jones, E. E., Kannouse, D.E., Kelley, H.H., Nisbett, R.E., Valins, S., & Weiner, B. (1972). Attribution: Perceiving the causes of behavior. Morristown, NJ: General Learning Press.
    • Merriam, S.B. (2002), Qualitative research in practice: Examples for discussion and analysis, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, CA.
    • Schmidt, Greg and Bernard Weiner. (1988) An attributional-affect-action theory of behavior; Replications of judgments of help-giving. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin; 610-621 Retrieved May 22, 2008 from http://psp.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/14/3/610 .
    • Taylor, S. J., & Bogdan, R. (1998). Introduction to qualitative research methods: A guidebook and resource (3rd ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons.