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.
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