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Posted October 10, 2020 at 12:00 PM
Christiane Germain expresses herself in the National Bank's 2020 report on Canadian family businesses. Groupe Germain's co-chair is one of nine businesswomen interviewed for the report released Friday.
“In the specific context of the pandemic, we felt it was important this year to push the human side. We were eager to hear from family-run business leaders about the reasons behind their success. We didn't just want to report on the role of women, but we wanted to know how they became CEOs, ”said Vincent Joli-Coeur, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, Financial Markets at the National Bank.
To our surprise, of the 38 companies that make up our index of Canadian family businesses this year, 13% are led by a female CEO or a female chairman of the board, compared to 5% for the rest of the companies. on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Vincent Joli-Coeur, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, Financial Markets at the National Bank
To support him in conducting the interviews central to the report, the National Bank conducted a appeal to the Professor Karl Moore, McGill University.
“During the pandemic, Christiane Germain and her 9-year-old granddaughter made a tour of Canada past the Groupe Germain hotels. Employees on leave insisted on meeting her and meeting her granddaughter because they knew the girl could one day become CEO. Christiane Germain wanted to show her the hotels, but also introduce her to people who could one day work well under her leadership, ”says Karl Moore.
"It is this long-term vision that brings the family to a business," adds the professor.
Alain Bellemare knew he was CEO of Bombardier for only a few years. Christiane Germain thinks in the long term. In general, the CEO of a family business can often make better decisions.
Karl Moore, professor at McGill University
Besides Christiane Germain, Julie Godin (CGI) and Madeleine Paquin (Logistec) are the other Quebec leaders whose comments were collected for the report.
"These women think of the next generation, of the future leaders of the company. They come up with an inclusive process for developing strategies and policies. They have a style that encourages dialogue and debate," said Stéphanie Larivière, CEO and Co-Head, Institutional Sales, Fixed Income, Currencies and Commodities, at the National Bank. "Without exception, these are themes that naturally emerge during the discussions. It is no coincidence that the nine women interviewed about talk the same thing. "
First in the kitchen
One thing Karl Moore noticed during the interviews was that the father was in charge, but the mother was just as important. “A family business starts in the kitchen. Literally. The mother is just as important as the father. Truly, mom and dad are co-CEOs in starting a business. The father was once at the forefront of social values. But as the company has changed, more and more women are becoming CEOs. But they have always played an important role.
The professor also points out that senior leaders' children learn a lot about the business world by accompanying their parents to the workplace or to related events at various times in their childhood.
The National Bank estimates that Canadian family businesses represent approximately 20% of the market capitalization of the Toronto Stock Exchange.
The performance of these companies is clearly superior to that of the others year after year.
Vincent Joli-Coeur, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, Financial Markets at National Bank
From June 2005 to June 2020 The National Bank's family-run Canadian business index generated an average annual return of 7 , 1% versus 6% for the main Toronto Stock Exchange index.
Of the 38 Canadian companies included in the index, nine are from Quebec: Couche-Tard, BRP, Cascades, CGI, Cogeco Communications, Lightspeed, Power Corporation, Quebecor and Saputo.
One of the criteria for inclusion in the index is a market capitalization of at least $ 1 billion. As the pandemic has hit several industries hard, MTY, Transcontinental and Bombardier are three Quebec companies no longer included in the index.