Initiating new Cascaders, it’s a tradition!

Initiation gives newcomers the opportunity to learn about various facets of our compagny.


September is often synonymous with university initiation ceremonies. The same holds true for Cascades, which has its own initiation period. Initiation is an opportunity for the company to transmit its culture and values, while having some fun! Here is a short interview about the unusual tradition with Maryse Fernet, Vice-President of Human Resources.

How long has initiation been part of Cascades’ traditions?

Officially, the first initiation was held in 1981.

Who leads the initiation?

Management considers initiation to be an integral part of the company’s culture. Several members of the management team help to provide a framework, but it is led by those who were initiated last year. Each year, new initiators take over!

What happens during initiation, and how long does it last?

Each region or business office has the option to initiate newcomers; it is not mandatory. While some units organize a few activities here and there, others keep initiation going for a longer period of time, holding all sorts of activities. It can last from one week to one month!

Initiation gives new Cascaders the chance to get to know their colleagues, get involved in the community, stimulate their creativity, and step outside of their comfort zones! Experienced Cascaders put the new employees into some very comical situations; apart from not being allowed to take yourself too seriously or, of course, being disrespectful, the sky is the limit! We definitely have a lot of fun at the event. Every year, initiation is based on a specific theme, which promotes our values pertaining to sustainable development.

Do many Cascades facilities participate?

Yes, quite a few of them participate. For the past few years, the head offices in St. Bruno and Candiac have followed suit. Initiation is more elaborate in Kingsey Falls, where we have our head office as well as 13 units. The employees look forward to the event; it has become a real tradition!

What are the objectives of initiation?

Initiation gives newcomers the opportunity to learn about various facets of Cascades, and to build a network of contacts within the company. Adaptability, teamwork, communication, autonomy, initiative and respect are the values that we focus on during initiation.

But we can’t give any more details, what happens during initiation is top secret!

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About the Author
Anne-Marie Gingras

A Communications Advisor with Cascades since 2011, Anne-Marie now also fulfills the position of Community Manager. She holds a BA in Public Communication from the Université Laval and a Certificate in Marketing from the Université de Trois-Rivières. As Community Manager, she is in constant contact with the public, sharing the company's newest innovations and reporting on its involvement within the communities it calls home. "I am very pleased to have the opportunity to work for a company that is responsible, respectful and transparent. It gives me a great sense of pride! Through social media, we are now able to interact with the population and we value this close contact. Cascades is an organization that encourages creativity and initiative, which allows us to develop in a very stimulating work environment."

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