2021 Star Women in Grocery winner Jayne Payette (Q&A)

Senior-level Star

Jayne Payette

President, Ice Cream division
Nestlé Canada Inc.


How did you get into the grocery/CPG business?

I studied food science at the University of Guelph and took a co-op position at Nestlé Canada. I never left!

What has been a career highlight or one of your greatest achievements?

I have had the honour to lead some incredible businesses at Nestlé, including Infant Nutrition, Beverages and now Ice Cream. A big highlight for me has been the incredible growth of our Ice Cream business driven by consumer-based innovation, our strong retail partnerships and the strength of our iconic brands. With that growth, we have been able to secure over $50 million in investment for our London, Ont. factory that is home to all of our Ice Cream manufacturing for Canada. That has meant additional employment opportunities, increased support for our local farming communities and increased purchasing of ingredients and packaging from more than 90 Canadian suppliers. We have also just announced an additional $41-million investment in another expansion which I am super proud of—this will continue to support economic growth.

What is your leadership style/philosophy?

The first thing I’d say is that I view leadership as a lifelong journey and I continue to adapt and improve my leadership style as I progress throughout my career based on both the external and internal environment and the needs of the teams I lead. I have the pleasure of working alongside many talented colleagues at all levels of the organization and there’s always a lot to learn and ways to grow. In terms of my style, I greatly value authenticity and transparency and I try to role model that consistently. I’ve learned through the years that while results are always important to deliver, it’s how you deliver these results that matters the most. Being positive, collaborative, and building confidence and capabilities along the way is more important in many ways than the results themselves.

What do you like most about your job?

I love this industry! It’s fast paced and always challenging so there’s never a dull moment, that’s for sure. But what I enjoy the most is the opportunity to coach and mentor others and to help them to grow in their own professional and leadership journey. I’ve had the opportunity throughout my career to learn from the best, and now it gives me a lot of satisfaction to help other future leaders grow and succeed.

Click here for the full list of 2021 Star Women in Grocery award winners.

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