Interview with Marc Lacoursiere - President of The Achievement Centre

Date: OCT 28th, 2010

Topic: Interview with a CEO

Marc Lacoursiere’s background includes over 25 years of business experience in sales, and leadership, working in small and large organizations.

His career started with an Ontario company where he rose to a leadership position. This business was purchased by a global company in 2002, and Marc eventually became a VP with this organization, leading the strategic sales business. This employer was purchased by a larger global company where Marc continued to function as the leader of one of its most successful business areas.

In 2008, Marc acquired the license to operate The Achievement Centre. In 2010, he purchased 50% ownership of The Achievement Centre International. He is currently the President of this company and also continues to operate his London business.

Marc has an Executive MBA from the Richard Ivey Business School (Ivey Scholar). He is married with two children. Marc actively volunteers in his community, and enjoys sailing.

BeTheBoss - Tell us about The Achievement Centre concept.

Marc Lacoursiere - The Achievement Centre helps seasoned professionals build a training, coaching and consulting business that is right for them.
We help them leverage their strengths and experience, and equip them with our proven Sales, Leadership, Organizational Development programs, plus assessment tools, to grow their client’s business – Intelligently.

BTB - How and when did you become involved with The Achievement Centre?

ML - The Achievement Centre has been in existence for over 25 years. I bought a franchise in 2008, and liked the model so much I purchased shares in the corporation and became its president in 2010.

BTB - What was your background prior to joining The Achievement Centre?

ML - I have been in sales & marketing leadership roles for over 25 years. I have an Executive MBA from Ivey. My passion is helping organizations develop their potential.

BTB - What are some of the advantages in being a The Achievement Centre franchisee?

ML - Significantly greater likelihood of success. There are thousands of under-employed coaches and consultants in Canada. We give coaches and consultants proven tools to ramp up their business faster, meaning they are making money sooner.

BTB - Who is your ideal franchisee?

ML - Someone who has been in a senior role especially in areas that have given them exposure to sales, strategy, leadership, and organizational development.

BTB - Tell us a little about the Professional Training Market?

ML - We are quick to point out that we don’t call ourselves a training company. We do so much more. However, training is part of what we do and is a growth industry. As the labour market tightens, employers are looking for ways to keep employees and get more productivity from them; employees are looking for organizations that will invest in them, and will go to businesses where that happens.

BTB - What are some of the greatest lessons you’ve learned in growing this franchise?

ML - That our real competitors are ignorance, complacency, and inertia. Most businesses are not investing much in their employees. The opportunities are significant, and the benefits to the client are fantastic!

BTB - Do you have a mentor and is there someone you use for inspiration?

ML - There are many people I would mention, but the founder or the business, Wayne Vanwyck, has been a significant supporter in my development.

BTB - What advice do you have for someone looking to acquire a Franchise?

ML - You need to have the skills to develop relationships. Most people get into coaching and consulting thinking if they can meet a few clients, then it will be repeat business and referrals. There always has to be a focus on finding new opportunities.

BTB - In your opinion, why do you think that The Achievement Centre would be a great opportunity for someone?

ML - The availability of quality employees is declining significantly. Employers are looking for creative ways to attract and maintain people. Employees will have a lot of choices where they want to work. Employers are increasingly willing to invest more to develop their people. It’s a great business because we are servicing a growing need, there is minimal competition (especially at a national level), and the work is so rewarding. Seeing an organization exceed its goals and being acknowledged for playing a key part in making that happen are the ultimate rewards – and being paid well to do it doesn’t hurt either!