My First Job (7/10)

Christiane Chadoeuf: “I decided not to quit”

Christiane Chadoeuf started her career as a junior auditor at Deloitte in Paris (Photo: Deloitte Luxembourg)

Christiane Chadoeuf started her career as a junior auditor at Deloitte in Paris (Photo: Deloitte Luxembourg)

This summer, Delano is asking Luxembourg professionals about their early work experience. This week we spoke to Christiane Chadoeuf, partner and audit/assurance leader at Deloitte. She told us about her long career at the firm and the job offer that once tempted her to leave it.

What was your first ever job?

Looking back after 24 years, which sounds somehow incredible, my first ever job was [actually] at Deloitte. I didn’t mean to last this long, but that’s where we are 24 years later--although I started in Paris. I started as a new joiner, a “junior” as we call new recruits in the audit and assurance department.

Would you be willing to be a junior again, for a day?

Yes, in fact! Over these 24 years, time has flown. Every year has been different, and what is incredible at this job is that one day is never the same as the one before. There are always new challenges, new clients, new meetings, new people, new teams--so, somehow, in a second you can forget how it was to start out. So, yes, I would like to go back into the shoes of a new joiner to see how they feel, because where I am, where I stand, I tend not to recall. I’d like to be like a mouse, like a ghost, not being known and just being with them.

Did you get along with your boss back in the early days?

Yes. Otherwise I wouldn’t be sitting where I am today! But, in audit and assurance you work with a lot of different people. I would say that I have learned from all of them. You get along more with some than with others… so with some it was difficult. But you [eventually] understand that, in professional life, nothing is personal; everything is professionally related. I think you need to make the most of [whichever boss you have] in order to improve, and after that it’s up to you.

Would your former colleagues be surprised to learn that you’ve ended up in your current position?

That’s a puzzling question! I’m not sure if I’m the one who can answer it. I don’t know… Yes. Yes, in a certain way, because it was never my objective to end up [exactly] where I am. My objectives have always been to really enjoy what I do, work for my company, work for my team, ensure that I was doing my job as a “réviseur d’entreprises” with trust and integrity. So those are my mottos. I think I’ve changed… but I also remain the same person who, when she arrived as a junior, just wanted to ensure that she was performing higher than expectations.

Do you remember what you did with your first paycheque?

Yes, I remember: I offered myself and my boyfriend at the time a very nice dinner at a reputable restaurant in Paris.

Did you ever consider quitting?

I once made all the steps to quit, yes. I did some interviews and even had a contract in hand with another company. It was nothing at all audit- or, let’s say, financial sector-related. And… either I didn’t dare, or there was something inside of me that said not to leave, but I decided not to quit Deloitte.

What was the job that tempted you?

At the time, I wanted to be an internal auditor, not an external auditor--to really, you know, review the internal controls of a company. I was young, I wanted to travel all over the world. It was that dream that, when you were doing internal controls for a company, you could visit different places.