The Super Hero of finance

March 25, 2009

The superhero of finance, Michael Sabia, is an emotional guy. He manages by his feeling and he needs to be surrounded by people he trusts.
I know about it because I once wanted to work with him as his chief of staff in Montreal. A head hunter had approached me and he wanted to recommend my candidature for the posting. I had left Quebecor since a couple months where I had achieved during almost 7 years the same job with Pierre Péladeau as a deputy who manages the office of the president.
My application was not considered by the President of Bell for a simple reason: Pierre Péladeau was the father of Pierre-Karl Péladeau and he led at the time a very serious fight against the monopoly of Bell Canada telephone. The head hunter has pointed out to Sabia that I had worked with father and not the son, there was nothing to do. Sabia did not want to meet me because I had connection with Quebecor. I have been a little disappointed but hey it was his right to choose who he wanted as deputy.
It will be interesting to see how Sabia will react against all of those who critize his nomination at the Caisse de dépôt…
In this story about the Caisse de dépot, Michael Sabia was chosen directly without going through a committee selection. Some excellent candidates who had sent their CV had not even received a letter of acknowledgement and we talk here about candidates of high level!
Hiring a CEO is not like hiring a chief of staff. The CEO does not only have to be liked by his immediate boss (Jean Charest) but he must also satisfy all the other bosses concerned by the management of the Caisse de dépot.
What should we do now about this situation? It is obvious that Jean Charest will not go back on his choice and he will not dismiss his superhero. Michael Sabia is ultimately controlling the game as only he could decide if he wants to take the risk of coming to work in a restaurant ( financial institution) where some owners and customers already criticize the quality of its foods.
In a restaurant, one of the methods for selecting a chief is to meet all the candidates and have them to prepare each a dish. A committee at the blind tasting is then choosing the best plate. Michael Sabia was not chosen by this method. Someone who loved him single opened the door for him to enter. But does the customers will enjoy his cuisine? A meal slightly overcooked (financial losses) or a missed sauce and everyone would hasten to say that other cooks would not have let burn the pot …
If Sabia is a fighter he will stay but if he is a prudent man he will leave. No one can work miracles in finance and if the clients already denigrates on your cooking, better go make some soup where you will feel more appreciated. Stay tuned!
Bernard Bujold
Link to pictures of Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
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The tragedy of Mont-Tremblant

March 19, 2009

Mont-Tremblant is in mourning and the tragedy of actress Natasha Richardson has upset those who are regulars of the place.
The line between tragedy and happiness is always very thin!
Many people who frequent the slopes of Tremblant keep memorable moments of pleasure.
Mont-Tremblant is the most beautiful ski resort in Quebec among the 75 in the province.
LeStudio1.com is deeply saddened by the death of the actress, but we also want to recognize the value of Mont-Tremblant at a ski center. We offer an mention of excellence to the actress for his career and another one at Tremblant for what it represents to the skiers.
We also suggest two actions for Mont Tremblant management:
1. To name a ski slope in Memory of Natasha;
2. To do a marketing campaign next season in order to promote the wearing of a ski helmet.
Bernard Bujold
Link page Facebook Natasha Richardson
Link to website of Mont Tremblant
Link to The Best 2009 – LeStudio1.com
Picture 1: Natasha Richardson
Picture 2: Nansen ski slope at Mon-Tremblant


Ski Lessons by Conrad Black and Natasha Richardson

March 17, 2009

Initially, my editorial was to reflect only on the life of Conrad Black which I think have many similarities with skiing. The accident occurred to Natasha Richardson at Mont Tremblant, however, deeply upset me and I cannot write about skiing without mentioning her specially that I was at Tremblant a few days before her …
But there is also a very close link between the Black and actress. In both cases, the tragedy should not happen and a time inattention has caused it.
One could compare Conrad Black’s life, as well as each of us life, to downhill skiing. We all start first at the bottom of the slope with the help of our parent as a lift. This step is very easy and less than one broken cable, nothing dramatic will happen. This moment is like childhood in our individual life. It is at the top of the ski slope that the situation becomes demanding and that everything will be influenced by our decisions. The top of the slopes is like adulthood.
We must choose the proper path to go down. All tracks are not of equal difficulty and sometimes, if we have not read the posters, we risk to put ourselves on a track that will be beyond our physical capabilities.
The story of my two best friends is a good example. One of them (Jocelyne) was with her sister (Miss X LeStudio1.com) and the two enjoyed the sun of the mountain. They left themselves seduced by a small track that seemed very inviting and harmless. This track was actually easy until the first turning point where degree of tilt was changing very fast (to 42 degrees) and in addition, the circuit became covered with bumps several feet high. By mistake, the two skiers had undertaken on a competition track (2 Black Squares) for extreme sports.
Jocelyne’s reaction was to stop and down hump in parallel position so as not to take acceleration. Her sister (Miss X) has decided instead to remove her skis and descend walking on the edge of the forest. The trip was a little long but it was better than reaching the bottom in a sledge emergency…
Every skier knows that downhill skiing requires his attention constantly on the track in order not to lose his balance by ice, a bump or another skier who go by us. Even a good skier often fall when he no longer monitors the track. Conrad Black makes me think of a skier who have choosen the wrong track, or was distracted when he felt out of attention. Once on the ground, he decided to accept his fall, to get up and quietly go down the hill depending on his available resources. This is a other rule of skiing: one must always remain calm when he falls and try to recover. But we must accept our fall and make choices accordingly thereafter.
Sometimes the consequences are more severe than expected and it is very unfortunate. The imprisonment of Conrad Black and Natasha’s situation are both sad but life is so made and generally they are small events that determine large.
I invite you to read the interview given by Conrad Black and all my thoughts are with the actress Natasha Richardson and her family.
Bernard Bujold
Picture 2: Natasha Richardson
Picture 3: Mademoiselle X and her Jocelyne
Picture 4: Jocelyne Primeau
Picture 5: Bernard Bujold – Mont Tremblant

The history of a magazine – LeStudio1.com

March 11, 2009

The Studio1.com begins its 5th year! I am the creator of this project which has been initiated following a meeting with Richard Branson of Virgin. The project which had been proposed to him, in March 2005, has never materialized but the email magazine which was the essence of the approach is still surviving today.
This Email magazine is primarily a photographic platform which was inspired to me by French actress Isabelle Adjani. I met her in 2004 in Montreal on the occasion the World Film Festival.
On a more personal note, I wanted also prove to myself that I had not lost the ability to communicate. After the death, on 24 December 1997, of the press magnate of Quebec Pierre Péladeau (Quebecor Inc.), several people have said to consider Peladeau as vulgar and lacking in etiquette! Because I had been his personal assistant for nearly seven years and had always defended the quality of communication of this man, many criticized me for
that loyalty. Some have even refused to hire me because of this reason!
LeStudio1.com is largely inspired by the techniques of communication taught me by Pierre Péladeau …
(See Personal website of Bernard Bujold)


The future of LeStudio1.com

March 11, 2009

The technology of e-mail (E-Mail) allowed growth of LeStudio1.com .
The initial goal was to associate with a large media group rather that to operate the project at the local level. Because it did not happen, the idea turned into a sort of blog – Email with several collaborators who sign the weekly content.
The first issue of the magazine LeStudio1.com had been sent on 14 March 2005 to about 300 people. This issue is being sent today to over 60,000 email addresses in the world, particularly in Quebec and France.
The next developments of the magazine however will be made around Web 2.0 sites, such as the main site LeStudio1.com and sites like Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and blogs WordPress and Google. Those sites are more useful to communicate in several languages simultaneously, such as English and French, unlike an regular Email. The various weekly stories and photos are already available on the various sites. On average, the number of visitors to our sites achieved between 1000 and 4000 each day depending of the subjects of stories.
LeStudio1.com is an adventure but who knows how far can travel adventurers?
(See Web 2.0 LeStudio1.com)


The Team LeStudio1.com…

March 11, 2009

Members of the Team leStudio1.com since March 14 , 2005

From the top:
1. Bernard Bujold, Miss X, Mister X,Miss Gym;
2. David Bujold, Chat des Neiges, BPod, Goguie;
3. Jacques Robert, Louis Royer, Christine Atallah, Marie Desjardins;
4. Marcheur éternel (The Walker), Pierre Péladeau, Isabelle Adjani and Richard Branson.
(See Web page of the Team at LeStudio1.com)

The adventure of the travel… LeStudio1.com

March 11, 2009

LeStudio1.com is like a toy, a small electric train …
Team members of the magazine LeStudio1.com have all in common the dream of creating!
Some remained in the train from the beginning while others have left during the trip. But all believed in the project and they came in this adventure for fun and passion. Without pleasure and passion, no travel would be worth the effort! And then there is the hope of discovery. Pleasure to welcome you aboard!
(See Archive of all editions)
Picture: Small Electric Train LeStudio1.com