The Selection Process

Twenty students from across Canada will be chosen to participate.


They will be matched with a local CEO from Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Vancouver or Calgary. Finalists will be chosen through a rigorous recruitment process designed to gauge their leadership potential. Participants must be enrolled in a Canadian undergraduate university or a degree-granting college program to be eligible.

Applying for CEO x 1 Day

You must complete and submit an online application which will be reviewed by Odgers Berndtson’s team of executive search experts. Your application will include:

  1. Your contact information
  2. Your university or college name and program
  3. A resume summarizing your paid and unpaid work experience, extra-curricular activities, community involvement or charity work, and awards
  4. Academic transcripts
  5. A written essay highlighting your thoughts on leadership

Evaluation Criteria for Phase 1:

Applications will be evaluated on students’ GPA, the breadth of their work/volunteer experience and extracurricular activities, and the quality of their essays on leadership.

Timing for Phase 1:

September 29th-October 28th, 2016

Approximate Time Commitment: 

1 hour

Online Leadership Assessment

Select students will then be asked to complete an online assessment to create a profile of their competencies and leadership potential which will be reviewed by our consultants.

Evaluation Criteria for Phase 2:

Applicants will be assessed on the strengths and competencies that are reflective of a confident and ambitious individual who handles stress effectively, is politically astute, dependable, and values learning and developing new skills.

Timing for Phase 2:

November 2016

Approximate Time Commitment: 

30 minutes

Phone Interviews

Selected students will then be contacted to participate in a short telephone interview with one of our search consultants.

Evaluation Criteria for Phase 3:

Applicants will be evaluated on the quality of answers to the interview questions and their ability to articulate themselves over the phone.

Timing for Phase 3:

December 2016

Approximate Time Commitment: 

15-20 minutes

In-Person Interviews/Evaluation

Selected students will then be invited to a half-day evaluation event at a local Odgers Berndtson office (Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa or Calgary). They will participate in individual and group exercises, including speed interviewing and presentations, and have an opportunity to meet and network with some of Odgers Berndtson’s consultants and partners. Students selected for this phase will receive feedback on the online leadership assessments they completed in Phase 2.

Evaluation Criteria for Phase 4:

Semi-finalists will be assessed on how they think on their feet, work in a group situation and their overall fit with our CEOs through activities like case studies, presentations and in-person interviews.

Timing for Phase 4:

January 2017

Time Commitment: 

One half day

CEO x 1 Day Event

Each finalist will spend a full day shadowing a CEO and learning about their background, career path, and how they create value in their organization. Finalists will have an opportunity to spend one-on-one time with the CEO, attend meetings with their leadership team and tour the company’s facilities. Each CEO x 1 Day experience will include elements unique to the host company that ensure it is a meaningful and memorable experience for both the student and the CEO.

Timing for Phase 5:

February 2017

Time Commitment: 

One day