In practice


Case study: Football player

John Doe is a 19-year old Spanish football player. His club offers players the chance to work with an external counsellor named Maria. Maria holds a degree in career guidance. In the scope of her collaboration with the club, she supports players of all ages, reaching from talents in their teenage years to professional players retiring from their athletic career.

Last year, John attended a club’s dual career workshop. In its course, the goalkeeper has briefly got to know Maria. Now, he has just signed his first professional contract. Moreover, John is about to finish upper secondary school. He decides to call the counsellor on phone as he is keen to investigate options to study at an online university alongside his professional football career. Yet, John is not sure about his concrete academic interests.

The following protocol extracts selected exemplary questions used by Maria to gather the most relevant information of John in accordance with the 3-points-approach of the Hello! Checklist (pdf).

Understanding the request

  • What is your concern?
  • How can I support you regarding this concern?
  • Can you briefly describe your current personal, athletic and educational situation to me?
  • Until which date do you want to reach a decision regarding your studies?
  • I have noted the following: (…). Are these the most important points? Did I miss something?

Outlining the approach

  • Have you ever worked with a counsellor? If not, let me give you some brief information so you can better imagine how our counselling would work.
  • Our meetings would take place in a 1:1-setting in a room at the club.
  • Our talks are confidential. I will not share any information with the club unless we would agree on otherwise. 
  • In our initial meeting, we would start by taking a closer look at your current situation. Then, we would try to define what you want to achieve in detail. In this course, we would also anticipate how many sessions we could approximately calculate with.
  • In the following sessions, we would then gradually work towards your defined goal. When it comes to finding the right study and university, we would explore your passions, interests and skills as a basis to make a good choice for a programme that is meaningful to you and compatible with your football career.
  • Between our sessions, you might be given little home tasks by me. It is crucial that you complete these tasks.
  • Our meetings are free of charge for you. Your club covers the costs.
  • Overall, do you feel comfortable with this approach?
  • Are there any questions at this point?
  • I am looking forward to working together.

Clarifying the organisation

  • For our first meeting, we will meet at room FC3 in the academy on Tuesday at 4:30 a.m. Please anticipate this talk to take around 60 minutes.
  • If there any further questions arising before this meeting, please do not hesitate to contact me.
  • In case you have to postpone the appointment, please inform me 24 hours in advance at the latest.
  • Subsequent to our call, I will send you an email with an Athlete Intake form which I ask you to fill in. Your data will be treated confidentially. Please bring the form with you to our first meeting.
  • Good luck for the game on the weekend! I am looking forward to seeing you on Tuesday.