A record number of members and guests networked online with us at our Club-Wide Online Meetup, where Ash Smith joined us for a Q&A on ‘Making Every Conversation Count’.

Ash has been involved in elite sports for a number of years, primarily working in talent development. Helping sports fill their pipelines with talent for future Paralympic and Olympic Games.

Thank you to meetup sponsor Bark Like A Big Dog. Network My Club members can get 15% off for the first year. Contact Joanne here for more information.

Ash Smith Q&A

What is a winning conversation?

Understanding the goal of having the conversation is important, it shapes your approach.

There are two forms: ‘inform’ or ‘influence’. They might sound similar but are different. An informing conversation is me telling you stuff. You see this a lot in sales. Just telling someone something won’t sell. But you need to influence someone in order to change behaviour.


Tell us about the acronym PRUDDIE…

This comes from barrister I worked with came up with it. Here’s what it stands for:

Prepare – what do you want from the conversation

Rapport – people buy from people, and even more accurately, who they think are like them

Understand – take the time to understand your position and view

Develop – what are the next steps, how could you work together

Decision – how do you go forward, what are you going to do to commit

Implement – do what you said you were going to do

Evaluate – think about the positives and negative

Explain what you mean by ‘cleaning the filter’

As a coach you want to help people. We listen, but always with an answer already in our heads.

It’s really dangerous. It relies on assumption that we are right, and a lot of the time I’m not. Our opinions are shaped on opinions through life.

For us it’s right, but it might not be for you. We have to remain open minded. We also jump to conclusions very quickly.

90% of areas of thinking are actually errors of perception. It’s not our thinking is flawed, it’s the environment in which we are doing that thinking which is the way we operate.

The U(nderstanding) of PRUDDIE becomes so important.

How does cognitive bias impact the power of conversation?

There’s a reason why we’re not as open minded as we could or should be. There are thousands of them that affect us.

One that has the biggest ability on the way we interact is anchoring. The brain will latch onto the first part of the conversation that you find important. All future responses are conditioned to that response. Be careful not to anchor something and let it grow.

Be aware of the curse of knowledge. There’s a danger that when you have all the knowledge, you give all of it. To someone without any knowledge, it can confuse them.

Confirmation bias. This links back to the idea that we’re always right. We always seek for evidence to prove that we’re right. You look for more evidence that that’s true.