Behind the scenes with our ‘CEO for a day’

April 6, 2023
Young woman and CEO mentor facing each other in office

Angelique Jeanty found out what it’s like to lead Canadian Blood Services with Dr. Graham Sher, her mentor in the CEOx1Day program

“I’m a little nervous, but I’m ready,” said Angelique Jeanty when she arrived at Canadian Blood Services’ head office in Ottawa. It was 7:30 in the morning, and Angelique was embarking on a one-day CEO experience, beginning with breakfast and coffee with Canadian Blood Services CEO Dr. Graham Sher.

Angelique was matched with Graham through a program called CEOx1Day, which is run by recruiting firm Odgers Berndtson. While hundreds of university students from across the country applied to participate this year, only 32 finalists including Angelique were matched with CEO mentors — executives who, like Graham, are passionate about shaping the next generation of leaders.

CEOx1Day has been running for more than ten years in Canada — and exists in several other countries as well — but Canadian Blood Services joined for the first time in 2023.

“I was thrilled to participate,” says Graham. “I think having Canadian Blood Services act as an organization that exposes students to what it means to work in a large complex organization is such a fantastic opportunity.”

In the boardrooms of Canadian Blood Services

As outlined by the program organizers, Angelique shadowed Graham for a regular workday in early March. She had the opportunity to join conversations and business meetings on topics such as human resources, scientific research, diversity equity and inclusion, and the challenges of collecting plasma for the manufacture of lifesaving medications.

Given her interest in a career in health sciences, Angelique was eager to take in as much as she could about what it’s like to be the leader of a large, complex, national health organization. And along the way, she got a true snapshot of the breadth of topics that CEOs grapple with daily.

“I learned a lot about the mind of the CEO and what a CEO has to think about,” says Angelique. “It’s really been a once in a lifetime experience.”

In fact, when asked tongue-in-cheek if she would take the CEO’s job today if offered, she was quick to say yes — while acknowledging the challenge.

“It’s a big job. I would have big shoes to fill.”

To read more about this experience from Angelique’s perspective, read her full blog on the CEOx1day website.

Interested in a career with Canadian Blood Services? Visit our careers page to learn more about the opportunities, benefits and our “people promise.”

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