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The performance coach program at PSB BOISJOLI pairs employees with a coach to regularly discuss career development plans and topics.Provided

Marco Covello started working in the audit department at Montréal-based PSB BOISJOLI (PSBB) in 2020. After a couple of years, he told his performance coach he was interested in changing departments.

“They took it very seriously and helped me to find where would be the best fit for me. The company made the process seamless, and I felt very supported,” says Covello, manager, corporate business group.

Employees at PSB BOISJOLI work with a performance coach on a regular basis to discuss topics such as their interests, workload, career progression or any challenges they may face. “You can talk about anything that will help you grow professionally,” Covello says.

Alexandra Chéné, manager, audit and assurance, is now a performance coach herself.

“When I became a coach, there was a learning curve,” she says. “When they set me up with a coachee, I had to check on them and make sure they were feeling fulfilled and that they were comfortable to come to me with any concerns. It helped me too. I enjoy helping someone else develop the way that I’ve been helped in the past.

“There’s a big culture of giving back at PSBB and I think that’s why we have the performance coach program. We want everyone to have this opportunity to help each other grow.”

Covello was also paired with one of the firm’s partners as part of a career mentorship program. “Your mentor helps you create goals for your career plan. It was amazing for someone at my level to have that access and support from a partner,” he says.

PSB BOISJOLI also provides employees with a good work-life balance, including flexibility to work from the office or home. “There is a very strong PSBB culture, so people generally choose to go to the office a few times a week to see people and be a part of that. But I do appreciate the flexibility,” Covello says.

One of the reasons Covello likes being with his co-workers is receiving and sharing support and encouragement. “Whenever you need help, you can talk to anyone,” he says. “It’s an open-door policy. If you have a question, there is always someone to ask. It’s just a warm atmosphere.”

Chéné says the strong PSBB culture is fostered by staff events, whether it is a community cleanup or a company-wide curling competition.

“We definitely work hard but being able to connect with the people I work with on a different level definitely helps,” she says. “Having events like this creates more opportunities to get to know each other and have something to connect about.”

Chéné says two of the most appreciated policies at PSB BOISJOLI are the four-day work week in the summer and a $1,000 annual health and well-being benefit. Chéné used hers to purchase a standing desk. She says some of her colleagues have used it to enroll in sports leagues.

PSB BOISJOLI also provides opportunities to grow. The firm reached out to Chéné to be part of the recruitment committee because they thought she was well-suited for the position. She focuses on hiring summer students and junior auditors.

“That’s been fun. I think I’ve hired 15 people so far and I’ve seen a few of them starting at the firm. It’s nice to have this relationship with them,” she says. “Even before joining the committee, I always loved answering people’s questions about the firm because it gave me a reality check of why I like working at PSBB.

“I’m very happy to be an accountant working here. I honestly do not envision myself working in public accounting anywhere other than PSB BOISJOLI.”

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