Recognized as one of Montreal's Top Employers (2017)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Apr 19, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why Lundbeck Canada Inc. was selected as one of Montreal's Top Employers (2017):
- Lundbeck Canada provides maternity and parental leave top-up payments to new mothers and adoptive parents, to 100% of salary for up to 15 weeks -- and offers the option to extend their leave into an unpaid leave of absence
- Lundbeck Canada supports the physical and mental well-being of its employees, offering a $500 subsidy for physical activities or activities related to psychological well-being -- additionally, the head office includes free access to an onsite, shared-use fitness facility
- Lundbeck Canada is a research-based company that encourages employees to continue their professional and personal development with in-house training programs, tuition subsidies for courses directly related to their job (to 100% of tuition) as well as subsidies for courses of broader interest (to $1,000 annually)
Lundbeck Canada staff walk the talk on mental health
Stella Antonaras experienced her "aha" moment over coffee with a friend. Life as a pastry chef was not providing the fulfilment she hoped for, after graduating from McGill University. Antonaras talked about her bad day at the bakery, and then the realization hit her. "Everyone has bad days, but if I was going to have one, I wanted it be in a supportive environment, not a hostile one," she says. "It was time to return to Lundbeck, where you are respected and everyone is helpful."
Lundbeck Canada, the Danish-based pharmaceutical company best known for tackling brain diseases, had earlier hired Antonaras as a summer intern. She continued part-time while finishing her degree. But then she switched gears to pursue her creative pastry dreams.
"Lundbeck spoiled me," recalls Antonaras, now the company's Communications Coordinator. "After I returned, it didn't take me long to find a new passion, working as part of a team helping others, especially those with mental health challenges."
Among its numerous community outreach initiatives, Lundbeck is a major sponsor of Montreal Walks, an annual event to fight the stigma of mental health illness. Says Antonaras, who helps organize the initiative: "I'm proud to work for a company that not only donates money to the cause, but in this case actually walks the talk."
She adds: "At Lundbeck, employees have a positive impact on the patients we help and on our community. We believe in challenging the status quo because people living with mental health issues and cancer deserve better. We are not just doing a job, but making a positive contribution to the world around us."
Catherine Baril, Lundbeck's Senior Director, Human Resources and Administration, says the company boasts a "culture of caring and performance -- we ask a lot of our people, but we care a lot about them, too."
One way Lundbeck demonstrates that care is with flexible hours, especially to accommodate families. Its airy new offices near Montreal-Trudeau airport feature a fitness facility that is free to all employees. Later this year, the company will offer subsidized healthy lunches in its cafeteria.
There are other employee-caring perks, including paying 100 per cent of all benefit premiums and a $500 wellness subsidy for a wide variety of activities, including photography and cooking classes.
"That shows the company wants you to lead a balanced life," says Antonaras, who uses the money for yoga classes. "It shows that they really care about the whole person."