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Categories : Notes from our CEO

March 09, 2021

Yesterday was International Women’s Day, a global day dedicated to celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. This year, the theme was ‘Choose to Challenge’, motivating others to challenge the status quo by calling out gender bias and inequality, and promoting inclusivity and gender diversity.

At Chartwell, we are proud of our commitment to the advancement of women to the highest levels of leadership. In fact, last year The Globe and Mail’s Report on Business ‘Women Lead Here’ list recognized Chartwell as a trailblazer in gender diversity in corporate Canada. I am not only proud of the progress we have made, but also of our commitment to the continued strengthening of diversity and inclusion in our residences and corporate offices, and the promotion of an equitable and respectful workplace. I encourage you to read our recent press release where we profile four inspirational and talented women who have developed and expanded their roles within Chartwell, and who are wonderful representations of our drive to “grow talent from within”. Thank you to Candace Lanthier, Luciana Vieira, Kim Grant, and Heidi Gagné for sharing your inspirational stories.

Supporting the growth and development of our employees – 82% of whom are women – is of paramount importance and would not be possible without the immense contributions of our Leadership and Development team. They have done a phenomenal job of creating and implementing top-rated programming and training to help cultivate and build talent from within our company, which in turn has helped to support employee retention. Despite the challenges brought on by the pandemic, in 2020 they delivered over 15,000 person-hours of learning on a variety of diverse topics, including our proprietary customer experience training.

Chartwell’s Aspiring Leaders Program and Mentorship Program are two ways in which we have committed ourselves to support our employees’ personal and professional growth. Through a combination of formal education, mentorship sessions and group training sessions, we have seen tremendous success from both of these programs. Since 2011, 144 participants have completed the Aspiring Leaders Program, 77% of whom were female, and 44% of those women were promoted. What a wonderful achievement for those individuals and for Chartwell to be able to provide growth opportunities for these knowledgeable, passionate, and driven leaders. As a result of our training and succession planning programs, we achieved impressive rates of internal promotions in many leadership positions, such as:

  • 53% of General Managers and Administrators
  • 69% of Directors, Regional Operations/Directors, Regional Sales
  • 51% of Corporate Directors
  • 29% of Senior Directors
  • 80% of Vice Presidents – Platform Leads
  • 30% of other Vice Presidents
  • 85% of Senior Vice Presidents
  • 100% of our Senior Executive team.

I hope all of our employees continue to challenge themselves and the status quo by taking advantage of the many growth opportunities available at Chartwell.

The Chartwell Experience

Residents at Chartwell Scarlett Heights during a packing snow winter activity

When cold weather kept Chartwell Scarlett Heights residents indoors all day, staff at the retirement residence in Etobicoke, Ontario knew they needed to step up! They decided to bring the perfect packing snow indoors and create a wonderful (and cold!) activity for residents to enjoy. The winter months can be long and lonely, especially given the current circumstances. Thanks to our incredibly creative staff, residents are still finding fun ways to stay active and social. Great idea and well done to the team at Chartwell Scarlett Heights!


A Worthy Read

I think it is only appropriate that given International Women’s Day, this week’s recommendation is from one remarkable girl – my eleven-year-old daughter Sofia. “The Giver” and “Gathering Blue” are two books by Lois Lowry recommended by Sofia. I hope you will enjoy these young adult futuristic novels as I recently did.

Vlad Volodarski
Chief Executive Officer