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date: 24 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The complex and dynamic relationships among the sport psychologist, the coach, and the team (athletes and staff) are discussed in this chapter. The consultative nature of the work of the sport and performance psychologist and how psychological interventions are applied in organizational settings are addressed and discussed. Specific relationship issues and consultation strategies related to coaches, support staff (e.g., sports medicine personnel), the team, and individual athletes are presented. Several common consultation issues, such as role definition, professional challenges (e.g., isolation), managing conflicts, and dealing with successful/unsuccessful performance, are discussed. I use a number of examples from my own experiences with professional consultations at the collegiate, Olympic, and professional sports levels to identify and describe key issues in organizational consulting. Based on lessons drawn from these experiences and on the fundamental principles of systems theory as applied to organizations, I offer a number of practical strategies to enhance consultant effectiveness when working with elite, high-performing teams.

Keywords: Consultation, sport psychologist, coaches, athletics administrators, teams, Olympic sports, professional sports, journaling, confidentiality, collegial support, self-awareness

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