My guest, Anne Chatroux, was an investment banker but she gave up that very lucrative career. While she was good at it she found that, after a while, she wasn’t that interested in it. Like many of us, her relationship as a child shaped who she is today, not without some investment in working out some old unhelpful narratives. Her work these days – coaching successful senior executives – is way more fulfilling for her, as she partners with her clients to help them expand their own sense of fulfilment, reach and impact on their world.

What you just heard is an example of how she helps her clients (21:47) – to hold the bigger view of themselves than others have of them so that they can achieve that bigger reach, that bigger impact. And of course, conversations are the primary tool for her trade.

I’ve got many favourite moments from my conversation with Anne about conversations like how our childhood difficulties can shape us (39:55) and give us both useful skills as adults for work and personal relationships, and narratives that become unhelpful triggers in our adult life that make connecting with others complicated.

Trust comes up again and again too. “Yummy trustful conversations” are important to Anne and she talks about how when we trust the person we’re speaking to, and conversation is flowing easily, naturally, she has a sense of “being smarter than normal”. 

Listen to the podcast find out what she means.

Jump Spots

2:57 – In what ways your work depends on having good conversations?

4:10 – Teaching people how to listen, quality of conversation, mastering foreign language

6:16 – Building trust, listening generously, listening to enlist and invite people into conversation and to share

7:43 – Generous listening, listening for what you can learn, not listening, pauses, sounding smart

11:33 – Team meetings, processing information at different speeds, leaders encouraging pauses

14:00 – Role of trust in conversations, being smarter than normal, conversation flow

17:05 – Absence of cortisol, present without any stressors, attention on the conversation

20:04 – Clients having a lesser view of themselves, blockers (fear, hurt and anger) reframing and boundaries

32:42 – Parents shaping style of conversation, not backing down or changing your mind, coming up with all the arguments up front and fast, stress and anxiety, parenting own children today, trying not be like your parents

39:55 – It’s difficulty that shapes people, overcoming terrible childhoods giving sense of strength

42:35 – Hearing, the way we talk about an issue reveals our relationship to the issue, choice of words, human beings offer a persistent interest for Anne

49:17 – Worst habit is interrupting people, not needing to hear the whole story, trust reduces need interrupt, skilled use of interruption, permission to cut in, when interrupting takes away the invitation

54:53 – Tone of voice and emotion in our voice, gesticulating with arms, bobbing head, phone equivalents of positive reinforcement

1:00:00 – Two pieces of wisdom

To learn more about Anne Chatroux, check her out on LinkedIn.

Better Conversations with Sehaam Cyrene

In this Podcast series, I capture and explore what makes for a great conversation, who has inspired our conversation style, and what bad habits we all suffer from. I do that by talking to people. There’s no judgement here – it’s just an interlude of reflection about the finer aspects of conversations as it stands for each of us.