The must-know formulas (continued): Take it from the pros.

Take it from the pros: finding success is simpler than you think! Pfizer President and CEO Paul Lévesque (DipMgt’92) used his time during the McGill Young Alumni networking event this past May to introduce the easy-to-use formula he used to find success in his professional life.

“Attitude + Aptitude = Altitude”

Lévesque credits the courses he completed at the School of Continuing Studies (SCS) with helping him to develop the “soft” skills necessary for his successful career in the pharmaceutical industry. He highlighted a trend that is spreading behind job recruiters’ closed doors: hiring for attitude. Although technical aptitude (or “hardware”) is important, Lévesque revealed that companies are taking a candidate’s “attitude” or “software” into great (or even greater) consideration. He used, as an example, a capacity to be open to (or an agent of) change and continuous improvement, which is a critical soft skill—especially in environments that are re-organizing bi-annually, and it is a skill that is extremely difficult to teach. A potential employee’s attitude is a reflection of personal values, “teach-ability”, and work ethic.

Vouching from personal experience and having traveled the corporate ladder form account manager to CEO, Lévesque affirms that the strength of such “software” is indicative of a candidate’s likelihood of professional success and advancement. And a culture of innovation is a key requirement for business success.

So, the attitude you want to project is a confident and a capable one. The only way to get the confidence needed to make a great impression is by… (drum roll please!) working hard and being prepared.

What’s luck got to do with it?

Armed with a Ph.D. in Political Science, Monica Trevino quickly became an unhappy university professor. She realized very quickly that she would need to take her transferable research and analytical skills out of higher education and into a different field. She considers herself very fortunate that opportunities at Universalia, a non-profit that is focused on business management solutions in the public and private sector, came her way. With a combination of lucky factors (of being the right candidate, at the right place and time that talked to the right person), Trevino eventually became a Senior Consultant for this international firm.

Check in later this week for the last installment of the must-know formulas!

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