what puts the me in medicago logo

Tell us about your arrival at Medicago 20 years ago.   

After my bachelor’s degree, I had planned to spend the summer tree planting* in northern Quebec before starting a master’s degree. But I changed all my plans after I heard there would be a baby coming! I decided to stay in Quebec City to wait for my son’s birth and I started looking for a job. My only criterion was to find a job in which I would have a direct impact on people’s lives. Medicago was actively recruiting and I decided to try my luck. That’s how I got my first job on the Molecular Biology team. 

 *Tree planting to reforest areas logged by the forest industry 

Over the past 20 years, your role at Medicago has evolved significantly. 

I started my career at Medicago as a laboratory technician and I’ve recently been promoted to senior director. Medicago has always recognized my commitment. They listened to my desire to take on more responsibilities, which allowed me to progress professionally. In addition, they supported me when I decided to do an MBA in business management alongside my work. The Human Resources team provided me with the necessary assistance to do so, which allowed me to develop my management skills.

What makes you a better manager?

Having held every Research and Innovation position gives me a better understanding of my team members’ day-to-day lives and the challenges they face. This makes it easier for me to anticipate issues and opportunities as the organization changes. Being familiar with all the positions also makes it is easier for me to recognize the team’s commitment and effectiveness and to lever its strengths to help it go further. It also allows me to identify weaknesses so I can find solutions to reduce their impact. 

Medicago’s mission is driven by five values: innovation, integrity, collaboration, adaptability, and engagement. Which value describes you best?

It’s hard for me to pick one. So I’m going to go for innovation and adaptability. Those are the two values that best describe me and that have the most impact on a daily basis, both at work and in my personal life. Not surprisingly, innovation is a big part of the Research and Innovation team. It’s THE value that drives our department’s work and that leads us to explore new ways of doing things. It’s a value that also follows me home, as I’m always looking for new or better ways to do a job.

Pierre-Olivier Lavoie Medicago

Since Medicago, like life in general, is constantly changing, it’s important to adapt to remain competitive. Adaptability is therefore also an important part of how I live my life.

The pandemic has shown the importance of innovation and adaptability over the past two years, and these two values have enabled me to face the challenges that have arisen during this uncertain time.