Business transfer | A fourth generation at the wheel of Groupe Morneau

Pierre, Denis, then André Morneau have succeeded each other at the wheel of the Morneau Group since 1942. It is now the turn of the fourth generation to occupy the driver’s seat. The siblings, made up of David and Catherine Morneau, now officially share the co-presidency of the company, specializing in the transport of goods.




According to the entrepreneurial duo, the secret to a successful transfer, especially of a family business, is based on several basic principles. Here are a few, inspired by their own experiences.

Freedom of choice

Although they began working as teenagers within the company, whose head office is in Saint-Arsène, in Bas-Saint-Laurent, Catherine and David Morneau say they never felt pressure to their father’s part in taking up the torch. Who knows ? David Morneau, 39, a guitarist in his spare time, could have decided to study music in Drummondville or enroll in media art and technology in Jonquière. “I ended up studying business law at the University of Montreal. And I found myself in the organization, naturally,” he explains. The scenario is similar for Catherine, 37, also attracted to the arts. And even once in place, it took time before they worked directly with their father, André. They initially had several other bosses within the company. This is how they rose through the ranks. “Our father made sure we were there for the right reasons. And on multiple occasions,” argues Catherine Morneau.

PHOTO CHARLES WILLIAM PELLETIER, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

It took some time before Catherine and David Morneau worked directly with their father, André. They initially had several other bosses within the company. This is how they rose through the ranks.

Being in the right place

The new co-president of the company, which has 1,600 employees and 23 terminals in Quebec, Ontario and Labrador, says that she and her brother have “hung on the values ​​of Morneau”. And their thirst for challenges was satisfied by the responsibilities entrusted to them over time. “The company culture allowed us to grow. And it is linked to our personal values, she says. Yes, the fourth generation is beautiful. But honestly, I think we wouldn’t have done it (take over) to the detriment of our personal happiness. We did it because we are proud of this company. » And it was always clear in their minds that they would opt for a co-presidency model. The duo says they complement each other. David oversees operations, development and sales, while Catherine takes care of finances, human resources and project management.

PHOTO CHARLES WILLIAM PELLETIER, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

The Morneau Group has 1,600 employees and 23 terminals in Quebec, Ontario and Labrador.

The ego in the locker room

The co-presidency set up by David and Catherine Morneau works well because they both understand that they must leave their “egos in the locker room”, they believe. They also know that there should be no taboo subject. “We are capable of addressing uncomfortable subjects when necessary,” says David Morneau. Many failures in family businesses are linked to emotions, unsaid words and uncomfortable discussions regarding people’s skills and their values. » “Working as a family is both hard and at the same time so beautiful,” adds his sister and business partner. It takes fierce discipline to maintain relationships. It takes authenticity and respect. »

PHOTO CHARLES WILLIAM PELLETIER, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

“Working as a family is both hard and at the same time so beautiful,” explains Catherine Morneau. It takes fierce discipline to maintain relationships. It takes authenticity and respect. »

A single diary

In the same spirit, the fourth generation of leaders of the Morneau Group affirms that sellers and buyers must be clear about their respective intentions and projects. Occasional meetings are thus included in their common agenda in order to “clarify the next steps” to be planned in the business transfer process. For the moment, his father André Morneau occupies the presidency of the board of directors and remains one of the shareholders. David and Catherine Morneau, who are both parents in their turn, also claim to have been well supported over time, in particular by participating in different entrepreneurial communities. In the medium term, there is no shortage of challenges. The co-business leaders aim in particular to increase their fleet of electric trucks to 50% by 2030 and want to continue to focus on a more collaborative management method.

PHOTO CHARLES WILLIAM PELLETIER, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

Catherine and David Morneau aim in particular to increase their fleet of electric trucks to 50% by 2030.


reference: www.lapresse.ca

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