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Employees at PepsiCo Canada can grow their career with its professional development programs and formal leadership training.Provided

Not many people recall having fun in their job interviews, but Lourdes Seminario, a senior director of marketing at PepsiCo Canada, definitely does. She says that’s what led to her joining the Mississauga-based food and beverage giant 23 years ago.

“I had two offers, and I decided to go with PepsiCo because the interviews were so much fun. I thought it was going to be a great place with great people,” she says. “And I was not mistaken.”

Seminario is not the only long-serving employee at the company: three of the four people who interviewed her back then are still working there. “That tells me a lot about PepsiCo,” she says. “I love it first of all because of the people, and then there are so many opportunities to develop your career and be more effective at your job.”

Dave Moncur, vice-president of human resources, feels the same way. “I’ve been here for 29 years, and the reason is that we’re a growth organization,” he says. “We’re focused on growing the business and our people, and you have to do both to be successful.”

To that end, the company offers employees a wide range of professional development programs, from basic onboarding to mentorships and formal leadership training.

“We’re really proud of our programs, and we’ve won multiple awards for them,” says Moncur, adding that they’re now expanding one of them, called the Leadership Roundtable Process.

“We pull six to eight leaders together for a full year, and they go through peer coaching and get together once a month to talk about their issues and challenges,” he says. “They get to a point where they become great coaches, and the best part is that we then ask them to lead groups of other leaders the following year.”

Moncur says that collaboration and communication are key to employee engagement at PepsiCo, which offers regular one-on-one meetings with managers and leaders to discuss issues, challenges and new initiatives.

“We have a rigorous strategic planning process, and we share the plan through the business and talk to all our employees about their role in bringing it to life,” he says. “Everyone has a clear understanding of what we’re doing and why and how we’re doing it. It means we can take an initiative across the organization in two weeks.”

Seminario values a program that uses colours to identify employees’ personality types and approaches to decision-making. “It’s really good, this awareness of different styles, because it helps us to understand each other and collaborate better,” she says.

She also likes the flexible work schedule that gives her time with her children when she needs it. “PepsiCo has always been good at considering the employee’s needs,” she says. “We are trusted in a way that allows us to deliver our best work, and there are great programs and benefits that help us succeed not just in work but in our lives.”

It’s all part of an attractive environment, says Moncur. “The number-one thing that comes to mind is the ability for everybody to make a difference in our business every day, no matter what job they’re in. I feel fortunate to be here. It’s an incredible culture.”

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Advertising feature produced by Canada’s Top 100 Employers, a division of Mediacorp Canada Inc. The Globe and Mail’s editorial department was not involved.

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