Joëlle Boisvert, a leading commercial litigator and managing partner of Gowlings' Montréal office, has been selected to participate in L'effet A, a new initiative in Québec that encourages women to "live their ambition" in their professional lives.
Launched in January 2015, L'effet A - in which the "A" stands for "ambition" - has challenged some of Quebec's most prominent business leaders to set an ambitious goal related to advancing women in leadership. The leaders then have 100 days to achieve that goal, all while documenting their progress on L'effet A's website.
Boisvert's 100-day challenge, which kicked off on Sept. 17, is to establish an "idea incubator" that will examine ways in which women can advance to leadership positions more quickly.
To date, over 30 female professionals have joined Boisvert in meeting this challenge, including nine lawyers from Gowlings: Mila Badran, Josée Gervais, Laura Gheorghiu, Suzie Lanthier, Mylène Lemieux, Joanna Lozowik, Mary-Pier Marcheterre, Lisa Peeling and Catherine Rioux.
As part of the challenge, they will identify factors that can hold women back when trying to move up the corporate ladder, and rethink the path that leads to these high-level positions.
"At the end of the challenge, our ideas and solutions will be shared, with the goal of creating a better, more accelerated leadership model for women," explained Boisvert.
Through her L'effet A initiative, Boisvert is also aiming to help foster ambition within organizations. "Ambition is like a bold colour," she said. "You've got to own it and wear it proudly."
Joëlle Boisvert and other female professionals at the L'effet A launch event