Women take the lead in CEO job-shadow program

Kellogg's, Cossette and Amnesty International are among the brands showing students the c-suite.
Casual Team Meeting In Open Office Discussing Business

A new and unique job shadowing program designed to help students shoot for the corner office regardless of their gender kicked off this month across the country.

The CEOx1Day program (from executive search firm Odgers Berndtson) will see 18 students paired with presidents and CEOs from some of Canada’s top organizations over the next month.

Of the 18 participating CEOs, 10 are female, which Odgers Berndtson partner and national diversity leader Jane Griffith said is indicative of the firm’s dedication to diversity and inclusion.

“It’s not only important to celebrate female leadership, but also to normalize it for the younger generations coming into the workforce,” she said.

Participating mentors include Nathalie Tremblay, president and CEO of la Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec, Lisa Kimmel, president and CEO of Edelman Canada, Debra Kirby, president and CEO of Canadian Freed the Children and Carol Stewart, president and CEO of Kellogg’s Canada. Other participating companies include PayPal Canada, Cossette, Vancity, Alberta Innovatives and Amnesty International.

Participating students have already been selected and hail from 13 different universities in Canada. Odgers Berndtson will track their experiences on its social media channels as each of their one-day job shadowing events unfolds.

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Business suffers when women flee (editorial)

In a post-#MeToo era, gender equality and female empowerment in the workplace have come into sharp focus. Despite various strides and initiatives, women are still under-represented in the C-suite in many sectors. For example, a study co-authored by PwC, the MaRS Discovery District and non-profit MoveTheDial shows that only 5% of tech CEOs in Canada are female and women comprise only 13% of the average Canadian tech company’s exec team.

Meanwhile, Canadian Business’s list of Canada’s 100 highest-paid CEOs showed only three were women. The highest-ranking woman, Linamar CEO Linda Hasenfratz, took home a reported $14.6 million – less than a quarter of top-earning CEO, Joseph Papa of Valeant Pharmaceuticals. The National Observer joked that there were “more Pauls than women” on the list.