In May, we held a Member Case Study Virtual Roundtable titled, ‘Communication in High Pressure Environments’, which was led by Leaders Performance Advisor Rachel Vickery, who is an expert in high-stakes situations. One of the key takeaways from the discussion was the notion that trust between athlete and leader is built up and earned away from pressure. Here we look to explore the three key areas that underpin this process of building trust.

1. The common factor in all sport is the human stress response

Vickery explained that the human stress response is something that we all have and can hugely affect how we operate within high stake situations. It is a primal response, and something that is survival driven. “We become very ‘me’ focused and combative” when in this state, says Vickery, which is not conducive to success in high performing sport. Therefore, it is so important as leaders to be aware if you yourself enter this state, and also recognise if your athletes respond this way in high pressure moments.

Members Only
Become a member today to get unlimited access to content like this, plus...
  • Events - Discover people and ideas that will progress your thinking.
  • Network - Connect and collaborate with like-minded peers.
  • Knowledge Sharing - Solve problems faster and turn insight into action.
  • Content - Learn with direction and find new ideas.
Find out more Log In

Discover Membership

Become a member of unrivalled network that spans all sports and every aspect of high performance and gain the confidence that you’re developing the knowledge, networks and skills that will lead to more impactful performance solutions and push your career forward at pace.​


Not ready to become a member, but still want to stay ahead of the competition?

To ensure you’re keeping up to date with the latest intelligence, sign up (for free) to receive newsletters. Get exclusive insight from top organisations worldwide on leadership & culture, human performance, coaching & development and data & innovation.