5 May 2020

On the 5th May, the Franco-British Chamber was delighted to welcome Executive Coaches Anne Roques and Penny Shapland-Chew as speakers for our latest web “Business Clinic” on the topic of ‘Being a strong leader in turbulent times’. Anne and Penny lead respective successful Professional Coaching businesses: Evolution Coaching and Shapland Coaching, and have over 40 years of business experience between. These two exceptional women are uniquely qualified to present this topic due to their personal experience at handling traumatic situations.

This “Business Clinic” took place as a workshop which gave participants the chance to reflect upon the topics discussed in smaller groups in breakout rooms and to share their own experiences and concerns given the current economic context surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic.


Anne and Penny’s Top Tips to ground yourself when facing challenges:

  • Plant your feet firmly on the ground
  • Release the tension from your shoulders
  • Gently massage your hands and feel the fluidity return to your body
  • With these simple gestures, energy can once again flow through us more easily and make us capable of handling the challenges facing us


With Covid-19 having drastically changed all of our lives, with the majority of the world’s population in ‘Lockdown’, Anne and Penny made us aware of the grief within ourselves, for the life we had before the ‘Lockdown’ and for the losses we may have had to face personally and professionally following the start of the crisis.

Anne and Penny presented to participants the Thomas Hübl model of leadership presence, how if there is fluidity between the mind, the body and the feelings, a leader can be fully present for their followers/employees and can handle challenges.

In breakout rooms of smaller numbers, participants were encouraged to reflect on how they are currently affected as leaders with particular focus on their feelings towards the confinement and what would be useful to them in moving forwards away from this crisis. General consensus was made with regards to the lack of information available to leaders and how they might lead a team when there is no clarity on what will come in the future.

Anne and Penny also covered how to be a leader from a distance, and how to make your employees still feel part of the organisation and remain aligned to the company initiative. It was understood that a greater awareness for other people’s challenges and increased compassion would increase the sense of comradery within an organisation and keep progress on track. We were introduced to the idea of a ‘stress bucket’, everyone has a normal level, but this level rises and falls over time as worries increase and circumstances change. Anne and Penny’s suggestions on how to ease the stress level within the ‘bucket’ included making time for rest and relaxation, talking to someone about your concerns, doing enjoyable activities and working on managing one’s time better.

This was a fantastically insightful Business Clinic and especially relevant given the current context and the challenge it poses to business leaders all over the world.

A big thank you to Anne Roques and to Penny Shapland-Chew for sharing their expertise with the Franco-British Chamber and we look forward to welcoming them back in the future.


Anne Roques
Executive Coach
Evolution Coaching

Penny Shapland-Chew
Executive Coach
Shapland Coaching