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Life advice from Picoum/Rouge FM Master Class

02/11/2016 Isabelle Racicot

Wow, what an amazing evening! Women aged 18 to 50-years-old came out last Thursday to listen to Isabelle Hudon (Sun Life Financial and L'Effet A) and Juliette Brun (Juliette & Chocolat) share their journey, life philosophy and their family vision. The evening was rich with content where the importance of self-esteem, ambition (it’s OK to be ambitious), half successes (not failure), and finding your own work-life balance was discussed.

During this 90-minute Master Class, I asked my guests questions, but I also appreciated those asked by the talented women who joined me for this evening. Since space was limited and many of you probably did not get to attend, here is advice from Isabelle and Juliette that you can apply to your life no matter what you do:

5 lessons from Juliette

Juliette Brun is French, born in Brazil and grew up in Washington. She studied finance and economy at McGill University in Montreal, and despite having little knowledge on the restaurant industry, founded her own café, Juliette & Chocolat, at just 22-years-old with what little savings she had. Today, 13 years later, Juliette is a mom of five, operates eight cafes and one chocolate laboratory. This is her advice:

  1. It’s important to set long and short life goals and to adopt the appropriate measures to reach them. Ask your yourself: Where am I? Where am I going? How can I get there? Constantly reevaluate your objectives and position yourself properly.

  2. Have courage and believe in your ability. Once you know what you want, go for it!

  3. Be patient and perseverant even when things don’t work out at first. It’s not time to give up, but time to try again with a better method.

  4. Concentrate on the things you can change or improve. We spend way too much time on the things we can’t control.

  5. Find YOUR balance. If it’s at work, at home, or in your everyday life, don’t let anyone tell you where your balance is. Everyone has their own.

5 lessons from Isabelle Hudon

For the last six years, Isabelle is Executive Chair at Sun Life Financial Quebec and Senior Vice-President, Client Solutions at Sun Life Financial Canada. In March 2016, she was awarded the Medal of the National Assembly for her commitment to the cause of women’s ambition. In 2015 and 2016, Finance et Investissement named her to one of the first five positions on its annual ranking of the Top 25 in Quebec’s financial industry. She has also been named on the list of the 100 most influential women in Canada. What’s more, she is the co-founder of L’effet A, a movement to help women achieve their professional ambitions. This is her advice:

  1. Be at peace with the fact that you can’t make everyone happy.

  2. Our ambitions aren’t too big, we just can’t always win.

  3. If you think you’re ambitious, you’re only 50 percent there. Pump up the volume!

  4. Instinct is not enough. Base yourself on credible facts and accept that these might force you to ignore your instinct.

  5. When you’re offered a position, the only question you ask yourself is: “Am I interested?” and not, “Am I able?”