portrait of kian basso fontaine

Meet Housekeeping Supervisor and Trainer Kian Basso-Fontaine

Published on : 6/12/23
    • Time with Sodexo: 2 yearsPortrait of kian basso fontaine
    • Location: Fermont, Northern Quebec
    • Segment: Energy & Resources
    • Role: Trainer

    Kian Basso-Fontaine is a trainer of Innu ancestry. From housekeeper to housekeeping supervisor to trainer, Kian’s career path has been on the rise with Sodexo since 2021.

    Kian joined Sodexo as a member of the housekeeping team in August 2021. He had long-term plans — due to limited availability in managerial roles at the time, Kian knew he had the potential for growth within the company, especially given his previous experiences in management positions.

    Opportunities came sooner than expected.

    Kian showcased his potential during his first 21-day stint at one of our remote camps in Fermont, Quebec. Recognising his capabilities, the management team offered him an opportunity to transition into a supervisory role in the larger sister camp from this mining complex. “They saw how I worked and how I was as a person, and they asked me if I’d be interested in being a supervisor at the bigger camp in the city.”

    This was a stepping stone towards his goal — growing and building a career to start a family with his girlfriend of seven years. 

    On-the-Job Learning and Supportive Mentors

    Kian transitioned from frontline worker to supervisor, managing a housekeeping team of 16 to 20 employees with about 450 rooms to maintain.

    That is where his past experiences came in handy. The transition happened quickly, so he coupled formal online training from the company with on-the-job learning, shadowing the previous supervisor and relying on the support of his on-site mentors. 

    “The management on-site was amazing,” he says. “The people I work with have welcomed me with open arms and I’m very excited about all the opportunities.” 

    This guidance proved invaluable, allowing Kian to adapt quickly and thrive in his position. Regular communication with the general manager and assistant general manager, and access to the human resources department ensured continuous support throughout his journey.
    Kian used and still uses all the tools available to him, taking in as much information as possible to help him in his daily tasks and prepare him for growth.

    Leadership Values and Management Style

    Kian's vision of leadership roles involves important interpersonal skills. For him, a good leader possesses qualities such as active listening, adaptability, and empathy. 

    “I feel like social skills are very important in life, whether it’s at work or at home,” he says. “For me, that’s what I go for.”

    For Kian, it’s important to try to understand his team as much as possible, and most importantly, to be understood by them as well. He considers the perspective of his team members when assigning tasks. 

    “If I'm asking someone to do something I always put myself in their shoes to see if I would want to do what I'm asking them to do.”

    Drawing from past leadership experiences, Kian fosters an environment of equality, treating everyone with respect and fairness. His background as an army cadet and learning from inspirational figures have had a real impact on his leadership style.

    Since speaking to us, Kian has risen to a crucial position within his unit. As a trainer, he is responsible for the onboarding of all new team members, from line cooks to supervisors.

    Company Support and Career Development Opportunities

    Kian appreciates the resources and support available within the company. With access to a plethora of online training courses, he is actively pursuing non-mandatory training to enhance his skills and knowledge. 

    The management’s genuine interest in Kian’s career goals and willingness to guide him in the right direction has been a refreshing change from his previous employers. 

    “The management here has asked me from the start what I wanted and what I was aiming for. They are here to help me succeed.” He continues: “That is not something I’ve experienced before.”

    Sodexo’s emphasis on continuous learning and mentorship has created a supportive environment for Kian’s professional growth.

    Embracing His Indigenous Background and Community Engagement

    Originally from Sept-Iles in Northern Quebec, Kian has embarked on a journey to reconnect with Indigenous roots — his mother is from the Uashat mak Mani-Utenam Nation. 
    Kian, who was raised in Montreal, has reconnected with this Indigenous family in the last few years. “I didn’t get to spend much time with the native side of my family growing up as a kid. That makes me a little different.”

    Kian expresses a deep commitment to his community’s growth and prosperity. He plans to learn the language, take classes, and contribute to the economic development of the community through employment opportunities. 

    “I'm very excited about getting involved with the community and getting to know my family a lot more, something that I didn't get when I was a kid,” he says. “I live somewhere else, but the plan is to move back to Sept-Iles and get to know them all and reconnect. And I’m excited about that.”

        Learn more about how we foster an inclusive work environment for Indigenous talent.