World Secretaries Day: Ode to Francine Fanchette

The World Secretaries Day has been celebrated in the United States for 70 years now. Historically, it has been celebrated as from the 1950s because of a shortage of qualified administrative staff in the post-war era. It aims at recognising the contribution of secretaries to the economy and attracting the labour force in this area. What a great opportunity to learn more about it with Francine Fanchette, who has been working in this field at Clinique Bon Pasteur for 26 years now.

Responsable d’Accueil since 2020 at Clinique Bon Pasteur, Francine Fanchette has gradually worked her way up as from 1995 when she started as a receptionist. Since then, she has persevered and studied to become, over the years, secretary and then Responsable d’Accueil. She draws her success on the one hand from her perseverance, and on the other hand from the fact that she has always been empowered by the management, including by getting necessary training. She already knew however that she wanted to build her career in this field, and took typing lessons when she was … 13 years old. After taking a position at Clinique Bon Pasteur, she completed a secretarial management course, thanks to the Clinic’s support.

In a nutshell, what is the responsibility of the Responsable d’Accueil at Clinique Bon Pasteur today? “My role is to make sure that a room and a time slot is available for all doctors, so that we can organise their appointments for them to see their patients. I also act as a bridge between the doctors and the Clinic’s management. In addition, I work with the reception team, listening to each member, motivating them, and finding solutions to problems together”. Francine Fanchette also sits on a panel at the Clinic, where she works on immigration medical files for the Canadian consulate.

In her 26-year career, she has witnessed many changes at Clinique Bon Pasteur, especially in the technological era when files began to be computerised, a change to which she was fiercely opposed at that time. However, today she finds it very useful that all medical appointments are handled on an online system, as it makes the job so much more effective.

And what’s the secret to finding the motivation to go to work during all these years, and especially in this Covid era? “I am a jolly person, and I always try to find the best out of the worst situations.” The Responsable d’Accueil draws her motivation from this motto, especially since it is extremely important to be able to keep a cheerful mood and go to work during the Covid lockdown. “We have to motivate the team, because other people need us, and that’s our job!”

And the last word? “I love my job at the Clinic, and I know this place like the back of my hand. I have worked for the company for so long that I became part of the furniture, as this idiom says. But my collaboration with Clinique Bon Pasteur is even older than a lot of furniture that we now have at the Clinic “she relates humorously!

If you need to make an appointment at Clinique Bon Pasteur, feel free to call on the 401-9500, and if you happen to bump into her, and she will be happy to welcome you with her humility and contagious humour!

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