Vicky is one of the most influential women in the public relations industry in Canada. Recently appointed head of the Alliance of public relations firms in Quebec, she also manages Bicom Communications, a company she co-founded with her business partner more than ten years ago. What makes this businesswoman smile? We are telling all, so keep reading below.
Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Definitely morning! Especially since I am a mother of young children. I am at the top of my game from 7am to 3pm, then I go into a more relaxed mode. Although, I love the evenings, I’m never the last to leave a party or work!
What is the item you like the most in your wardrobe?
I have a few Hermes silk scarves. They were given to me by people close to me whether it was my team or my lover or even myself to celebrate a victory. They revamp a more ordinary look in a minute; ideal for when I travel. I can also play with colors depending on my mood. When I have a big presentation or business meeting that intimidates me, they inject me with a dose of confidence and serve as a good luck charm!
Where do you go for drinks?
In recent years Happy Hour has become the rush hour at home. That being said, I often host friends at home with a good bottle of Sancerre or Prosecco Carpene Mavolti if we a feeling festive! For outings, I try to discover a new place every time I go out. A recent discovery is the Veuve Chalet on Laurier where I recently celebrated my birthday. Their hidden terrace in the back is beautiful, the delicious cocktails and the team are great fun!
Your favorite shopping destinations?
With my work, I have the chance to collaborate daily with several clothing brands. Besides my clients that I like to wear (Eve Gravel and Banana Republic), I am addicted to the Zara app for the styles of the season. For special occasions, I go to La Petite Arçonne. I always find unique pieces and am not likely to spot someone wearing the same outfit at an event.
Who is your female leadership icon?
Over the years, I have had the opportunity to meet incredible women who have inspired me all in their own way. Whether Isabelle Hudon and Danièle Henkel a decade or more ago, Monique Leroux, Geraldine Martin and the positive energy bomb Isabelle Dessureault, they all have an important point in common. They found their place and did not wait for all the doors to be opened for them. They also found the right balance between moving towards their goals and mobilizing their teams to get things done.
High or flat heels?
Both! I still have a pair of high heels in my car and in my office. When I have a meeting or an outing, they always add a little something to my look. If we’re talking comfort, I am very happy with the return of the flat shoes. The choice is so vast today for stylish, comfortable shoes.
What makes you smile?
I am someone optimistic and most of the time positive, so I have to say, I smile pretty easily. I especially like to smile at strangers; it is fascinating how people don’t always respond because they are often surprised. I also like to greet older people, their smile makes me happy. There are a lot of lonely seniors and we have so much to learn from them.
Your favorite restaurant?
As I am from the Côte-Nord and a fisherman’s daughter, it goes without saying that I particularly love seafood! Without a doubt I would say that my favorite restaurant is Ferreira. Even though I found it intimidating at the beginning of my career, it quickly became one of my favorite places for business lunches or dinners with friends.
What do you think is the greatest difficulty that women face in 2018?
There are so many issues and they vary from one country to another. Right here in Quebec women occupy most of the most precarious jobs and are at the head of 85% of single-parent families. In addition, 21% of these mothers live below the poverty line. The Lise Watier Foundation does an exceptional job in providing them with concrete solutions and personalized tools to achieve financial autonomy, thus ensuring a better future for them and their children. It is a cause that touches me immensely.
What’s the last book you read?
“Mindset – The new psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck Ph.D. is such an inspiring book, I try to apply the method of thinking to all the facets of my life. Based on research results, anecdotes of daily life and biographical elements of personalities, the author demonstrates that abilities and talent are not enough, but that the mindset of the individual has a major impact on the success of our lives.
Do you have a mantra, a motto in life?
Like the song says: What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! Every time I meet a big challenge that stresses me, receive bad news or doubt myself, I repeat this sentence, it’s like a hymn to resilience. I also keep have Chinese fortune cookie proverbs that I stick everywhere. For example, on my computer screen I stuck: “Pray for what you desire, but work for what you need”.
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
I do not have many secrets from my entourage! I often make my boyfriend and my friends laugh as I really do not have a filter and I easily share my thoughts or what I love. Otherwise, people are sometimes surprised to learn that I like fishing (but not the mosquitoes) and that I played percussion and drums as a teenager.
What would you like to see as a change affecting women in 2018?
Michelle Obama, during her last stint in Montreal at a conference, said something that made me think a lot. She pointed out that in America many women do not have to live with the concept of glass ceilings, gender inequalities and situations where women’s rights are not respected. She also appealed to all women by telling them: stand up for your sisters! I would like to see privileged women helping to fight for those who are not as fortunate I would like them to use their power and network to make a difference.
What would you like to do more often?
Run in different places. I have memories of incredible travels in Tokyo, Barcelona or even in the countryside in England all experienced by running. Running allows me to see the landscape with a different eye and these experiences abroad are embedded in my memories. More regularly, it is on the edge of the railway in Rosemont in Montreal or on the shores of Lake Ontario in downtown Toronto that I find my “buzz”.
What advice would you give to women today?
Be yourselves! Try, receive, start again and repeat! Don’t be the brake on the success of your wildest dreams. Never hesitate to ask for advice or help, but also remember that someone, somewhere could benefit from your support!