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Ascension - Program For Current And Aspiring Executives



Are you being groomed to step into a leadership role in your organization? Have you recently been promoted to an executive-level position and feel your skills need a boost? The Ascension program is here to guide you as you climb to the top!

Combining the academic excellence of HEC Montréal faculty members with the on-the-ground experience of eight respected business executives, this program will give you the tools you need to adjust to your new role and the responsibilities that come with it. Learn what it takes to confront the strategic challenges facing your organization, lead with more confidence and foster a culture of innovation so essential to your company’s and your own success.

Ascension is ideal for leaders looking to forge a bold, strategic vision and develop sharper decision-making reflexes. It is a one-of-a-kind program that lets you share what you are going through with your fellow participants and instructors, adding a rich, interactive layer to the overall learning experience.

Being a leader means thinking strategically


This program will help you:

  • Broaden your management skill set
  • Develop a coherent, executive-level approach to strategic issues
  • Sharpen and embolden your decision-making
  • Revitalize your analytical mindset
  • Leverage state-of-the-art tools to set yourself apart
  • Build up your network to support your initiatives.


This program is designed specifically for current and aspiring leaders, senior managers and executive committee members with formal managerial training or 10+ years of experience.


  • Select modules taught in residence
  • Dynamic, interactive and intensive curriculum
  • More than 13 experts, including 8 senior executives, sharing their experience with you
  • Meaningful interactions with instructors and fellow participants
  • Psychometric testing to assess transformational leadership skills and an online one-on-one conversation with a certified coach to go over the results
  • A singular opportunity to grow your network
  • Time to ponder your managerial profile and aspirations


“I was immediately struck by how captivating the content of this program was. All week long, I acquired new tools to take my day-to-day practices to new heights and propel my career forward. It was an excellent opportunity to take a step back, think about myself as an individual and a manager, and reflect on my organization’s needs. The program was very thought-provoking and made my work that much more meaningful!”

Tania Côté, Manager, Metering Division, Hydro-Québec

“I liked that the program took a hands-on approach, but with plenty of theory to back it up. We learned a lot about the habits of successful executives, which let us see how the theoretical aspects play out in real life. So in addition to the concrete tools we had to work with, we picked up key concepts that helped shape our thinking.”

Mélissa Delaney, Physical Health Program Lead, Villa Medica

“We’re in the midst of transitioning our family business from one generation to the next, and the Ascension program has been particularly helpful, especially when it comes to the more human aspect of things.”

Julie Frigon, Partner, Gyva

“This program explores the essential aspects of what it is to be a business leader. It’s a compelling mix of theory, case studies and real-life experiences from top executives.”

Jacques Béland, Senior Manager, Canadian Forces Morale and Welfare Services; Coach, Modern Health

“An excellent program that gave us a closer look at the experiences of CEOs and leaders, in order to reinforce the theoretical concepts taught and make them really come alive. Now we can take this knowledge and apply it to our own careers.”

Anick Tremblay, Senior Director — Planning, Strategy and Expertise, Hydro-Québec


Module 1
Opening reception

Réal Jacob and Robert Dutton

  • Program overview
  • Conversation with an experienced CEO – The executive as leader, manager and individual: Facts and perspectives

Day 1 - Shifting Perspective

Nicolas Vincent

  • Business environment: Understanding it today, anticipating it tomorrow
    • Broadening your analytical horizons
    • Identifying trends and understanding what they mean from a strategic perspective
    • Handling complexity with more assurance

Jacques Neatby

  • How to fit into a management team
    • The rules of the game: Succeeding and working effectively as part of a management team
    • Power: Growing your power to have a greater impact on the team
    • Influence: Earning your coworkers’ support

Guest executive (evening):
Marie Pier Germain, Vice-President, Sales and Marketing, Germain Hotels

Day 2 - Strategic Thinking For the Win!

Louis Hébert and Alain Brunet

  • Analyzing internal and external strategic context: Tools to improve your analytical insight and executive decision-making
  • Transforming strategy into tangible action plans: Resources and the role of the CEO
  • Striking a balance between rational decisions, risk management and decision-makers’ instincts

Day 3 - Seeing Things Differently

Laurent Simon

  • Re-examining your company’s business model and identifying new ways to add value using the Business Model Canvas (BMC)
  • Placing creative thinking and new approaches to innovation (co-creation, collaboration, open innovation) at the heart of strategic thinking
  • Creativity workshop: Experimenting with an analytic framework to develop an organizational culture of innovation

Guest executive:
Daniel Lamarre, Executive Vice Chairman of the Board, Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group

Module 2
Day 4 - Leading Strategic Change and Organizational Transformation

Réal Jacob

  • Acquainting yourself with the trends and challenges linked to organizational transformation
  • Solidifying your change leadership: Understanding the role of executives and the management team, and determining how to engage stakeholders
  • Guiding large-scale transformation: A five-point analytical framework
  • Moving beyond managing change to empower organizational transformation

Guest executive:
Yves Devin, Adjunct Professor, HEC Montréal; President, Groupe Conseil Devin

Caroline Ménard and Maryse Leduc

  • Addressing the challenges of being a transformational leader
  • Making transformational leadership work: Four action areas
  • Understanding the three main spheres of transformational leadership
  • Analyzing the results of a psychometric test to determine the level of ease or effort in deploying energy and resources in applying transformational leadership skills

Guest executive:
Roman Oryschuk, Adjunct Professor, HEC Montréal; President and CEO, Global Change Leaders

Day 5 - Successfully Transitioning to an Executive Role

Alain Gosselin

  • Reflecting on five essential questions
  • Making your new role and responsibilities your own
  • Determining what to keep and what to leave behind
  • Pinpointing where things might go wrong

Guest executive:
Geneviève Fortier, FCHRP, CEO, Promutuel Assurance


This is a dynamic, interactive and intensive program, using a wide variety of learning methods, including case studies, concrete examples of best practices in action, analytical frameworks, group discussions and conversations with high-level business leaders.

Part of the program will be held in residence so that participants can devote their undivided attention and energy to their training and take full advantage of the corresponding synergies.

Participants will also receive a compendium of resources to take with them to support what they have learned during the course.


The Brio transformational leadership psychometric test was developed using PerformanSe’s PERF ECHO self-assessment tool. It lets you take a closer look at behavioural tendencies and main workplace motivators, based on 10 competencies identified by research and consulting teams as being particularly important in developing a leadership style conducive to organizational transformation.


Participants will receive a copy of the following books:



Les communautés d'innovation


Faculty administrator and instructor:

Réal Jacob

Réal Jacob

MPs (Industrial Psychology), CEA (Labour Studies)
Professor Emeritus, HEC Montréal; co-author of Paroles de PDG; Vice-Chairman of the Board, Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et Culture (FRQSC); corporate director, Dynamo


Alain Brunet

Alain Brunet

Adjunct Professor, HEC Montréal; former president and CEO of the SAQ

Yves Devin

Yves Devin

Adjunct Professor, HEC Montréal; President, Groupe Conseil Devin; former CEO and senior executive with major organizations such as the Société de transport de Montréal and the Casino de Montréal

Robert Dutton

Robert Dutton

Adjunct Professor, Department of Management, HEC Montréal; corporate director; author of the book Mise à niveau; former CEO of RONA

Geneviève Fortier

Geneviève Fortier

CEO, Promutuel Insurance; corporate director, Insurance Bureau of Canada, the Canadian Association of Mutual Insurance Companies and Investissement Québec

Marie Pier Germain

Marie Pier Germain

Vice-president, Sales and Marketing, Germain Hôtels

Alain Gosselin

Alain Gosselin

Professor Emeritus, Department of Human Resources Management, HEC Montréal; head of the Reflective Mindset module of the McGill–HEC Montréal EMBA program; co-author of Paroles de PDG

Louis Hébert

Louis Hébert

Professor, Department of Management, HEC Montréal; Co-Director of the McGill–HEC Montréal EMBA

Daniel Lamarre

Daniel Lamarre

Executive Vice Chairman of the Board, Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group

Maryse Leduc

Maryse Leduc

Director Consultant, Leadership and Culture, Brio

Caroline Ménard

Caroline Ménard

President, Brio

Jacques Neatby

Jacques Neatby

Lawyer and Partner at MindLab; Adjunct Professor, Executive Teams and National/International Strategy, McGill–HEC Montréal EMBA

Roman Oryschuk

Roman Oryschuk

Adjunct Professor, HEC Montréal; President and CEO, Global Change Leaders

Laurent Simon

Laurent Simon

Professor and Director, Department of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, HEC Montréal; Co-Founder and Director of Mosaic

Nicolas Vincent

Nicolas Vincent

Professor, Department of Applied Economics, HEC Montréal; Lead Researcher, Economic Cycles and Financial Markets, CIRANO


$ 9,995 $ + taxes


Summer 2024

May 5 to June 7, 2024
Five days and one evening

Module 1 - In residence
One evening and three days

May 5 (evening)
May 6
May 7
May 8

  in residence
  Alt Hotel, Dix-30

Module 2 - At HEC Montréal
two days

June 6
June 7


in class

For module 1, your registration includes three nights’ accommodation, coffee breaks and meals. Module 2 takes place at HEC Montreal and your registration includes both coffee breaks and lunches.

Make an appointment with:

Émilie Mazet

Émilie Mazet
Program Manager

By Email or Phone

Download our brochure (in French)

Custom Program Also Available On Demand

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