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Q: Alexandre, a big congratulations to you on the appointment of your new position! What was your journey to get here?
AP: I came to Quebec 20 years ago, from France, with a Master of Industrial Engineering and experience working in the industrial sector. But I was looking for more. I wanted to try something new, something that excited me. You see, drumming is a hobby of mine. When I learned about Solotech, I felt like my worlds could come together, and I really wanted to get a job there.
So, I went on the website, found all the emails of staff that I could, and sent fifty! I wrote a letter to every single person. The next day, the retail store manager replied and set up an interview with me for an inside sales position. I had the pleasure of being interviewed by the founder of the company, who thought I was overqualified for the job, but I didn’t care. I wanted to work for Solotech. I took that position 16 years ago, and here we are today.
Q: You knew you wanted to work for Solotech when you came to Canada, but what was your dream job growing up?
AP: My very first dream was to be a garbage collector. I was really impressed by the trucks! Then I decided I wanted to be a pilot or an astronaut, part of something bigger than keeping just two feet on the ground. I loved technology, so I decided to take that in university; the natural path was science.
But honestly, everything just hit me a couple of days ago. I realized that everything I do is related to leadership; it is the main constant in my career. I have tried to reflect on my dreams and think about how I got here. It goes back to two important leadership figures I had all along: my father and uncle. I saw how they were respected in their work, and I realize now that it was always there, inspiring me. I have it in my DNA to be my team’s best leader.
Q: What is your leadership style?
AP: I have had so many roles within the organization that I don’t feel I oversee people; I am beside my team. We work together to make everything happen. Yet, I take my responsibility seriously. For my team, I’m always ready to take responsibility in times of hardship. That said, if everything is going well, it is thanks to the team members who are the strength.
When you have the courage to trust and support your team, it is easier in the end, and it gives you the confidence to be their leader.
A boss of mine once told me, you don’t need a position to be a great leader, and that is what drives me. I want to protect and support the people I work with because we collaborate to make things happen.
Q: What does a day in the life of the President of the Sales and Systems Integration Division in Canada look like?
AP: Part of my job is to analyze and figure out what challenges there are so that I can work to come up with solutions—these could be operational or strategic challenges. I also enjoy working with my sales team to build the best proposals for our clients and participate in developing market strategies. Honestly, that is the beauty of Solotech. When you work, you don’t hide behind a position; you need to be involved in the entire process and work together as a team. Every day is different.
Q: What is something not everyone knows about Solotech?
AP: The company’s Sales and Systems Integration Division is still relatively unknown to my liking. We are recognized for our shows and tours, but there are also a lot of permanent installations we do, and I want our clients to know that. We can install AV systems in office spaces and transportation, create immersive experiences, projections and videos, audio systems, and so much more. Solotech is a very well-known name, but one of my personal goals for Canada is to be renowned as the AV permanent installation integrator of choice.
Q: Finally, let’s look to the future. What excites you most about the evolution of your division?
AP: Sales and Systems Integration is the future! I see even more synergy between all the divisions and teams among Solotech because the technology is converging and consolidated, and the teams are coming together more. I can see one big Solotech for the client. When you deal with us, you have a complete offer! We constantly evolve, and our employees and customers benefit from our progress. Solotech will be an even more impressive company, a destination for AV enthusiasts, ambitious future employees, and the business partner of choice.