Skip to contentSkip to navigation

A conversation with Jean-Pierre Vasseur

May 11, 2018
Written by

Joanna Wilson

Our next guest, Jean-Pierre Vasseur

Today we kick-off the formal agenda of The Institute 101. This is my favourite time of the work year, where we bring together communications professionals from across Canada, the U.S. and the U.K., to participate in interactive sessions and learn in beautiful Montreal.

Our first guests (as David Letterman says) need no introduction. Rick Murray – Managing Partner in Toronto and Chief Digital Strategist for the Firm – sat with Jean-Pierre Vasseur, President and CEO, to talk people, talent, acquisitions, tattoos, and the future of communications.

Here are just a few of the highlights I took away from the Q&A:

  • OPTIMISM: Jean-Pierre is feeling good about the future. He feels very fortunate to have good people surrounding him. While he recognizes that we are living in a tough world and a challenging economy, it still creates great opportunity with the types of issues we have to solve for our clients.

  • GROWTH: It is an exciting time for the Firm – we want to grow. We are shooting for $200 million in the next three years – and we believe in ourselves. We are thinking for the long-term, looking to make acquisitions in the U.S. and Europe – companies with strong talent, who are innovative and share the Firm’s values (and talent is more important than the numbers).

  • SUCCESS: Be innovative, collaborative and forward-thinking. Decide what you want to be famous for, and invest in your growth and learning. Bring the best team forward from across the network, putting the client at the centre and think about what the client needs first.

  • VALUES: With a shoe size of 15, our founding Chairman Luc Beauregard’s were hard shoes to fill, literally and figuratively. But his values of hard work and integrity have stayed with Jean-Pierre. Jean-Pierre also advises: speak your mind, be yourself and most importantly be a good listener.

  • VISION: When asked how newer and junior consultants can stand out, Jean-Pierre says there is nothing that leadership loves more than when someone has an idea, and brings it forward: “We support an entrepreneurial spirit. Take the initiative, have a plan, present it. You will get our full support.”

We found out Jean-Pierre’s go-to karaoke song is Frank Sinatra’s “My Way”, he still gets emotional talking about Luc, and believes that honesty, loyalty and integrity will bring you a long way.

And Jean-Pierre’s one hope for this group? Have fun in whatever you do in your professional career. He has.

——— Written by Joanna Wilson, former Senior Vice-President, NATIONAL Public Relations.