A mechanical engineer armed with solid technical expertise, Émilie Nadeau challenged herself to overcome imposter syndrome to take full ownership of her ambition and awaken the great leader that was dormant inside her.
Making her mark, informally at first, she quickly showed signs of natural leadership among her colleagues—almost all men—by getting out of her comfort zone time and again. From one challenge to the next, she finally landed the position of supervisor to the mechanical engineering team, a role that only a few women have held.
As if this wasn’t impressive enough, she became one of the company’s six new shareholders, a sign of hard-earned confidence!
When they announced that I was a prospective future Seneca shareholder. I was so excited that I couldn’t sleep for days! It took a while to absorb the news and to be able to talk about it—my imposter syndrome was back with a vengeance!
The A Effect, the Ally to Her Success
“In fact, my biggest challenge, even today, is talking about my success,” confides Émilie. “The work I’ve done to define my strengths and values, and most of all, to grasp and celebrate my small and big accomplishments has allowed me to strengthen my confidence.”
A Défi 100 jours, the French counterpart of The Ambition Challenge, and Défi Leadership graduate, she often had to solicit her colleagues’ feedback. “It was a nerve-wracking exercise,” she recalls, “but extremely gratifying!” To see herself through the eyes of others really helped her gain confidence in her potential.
To All the Women Who Want to Follow in Her Footsteps
To those who aspire to have more responsibilities at a company they love, Émilie says: “Have confidence! When I’m unsure of myself, I ask myself who else could accomplish this goal and why. And often, the answer becomes obvious: I’m capable. I’m not perfect, but I’m at least as good as the others—and that’s enough!”
A Significant Achievement Internally
Émilie’s desire to learn and outdo herself daily and to help others do the same didn’t go unnoticed at Seneca. The supervisor and shareholder positions that she landed are proof that commitment and enthusiasm pay off!
Q&A: Lightning Round
Émilie’s passionate DNA
Go-to song to boost her ambition: Can’t Stop the Feeling, by Justin Timberlake
Dream mentor: Geneviève Fortier, for her calm self-confidence and her ability to make us feel important.
Favourite quote: “We are our choices. Build yourself a great story.” —Jeff Bezos
Definition of “ambition”: “Having the guts to go for what we want to create.”
Advice to women who hesitate to join The A Effect: “Why hesitate? It brings nothing but positivity! And every woman evolves at her own pace.”