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5 questions to Philippe «Elvis» Rochette

Philippe Rochette

Get to know the opticians behind your glasses. Today's optician: the boss

Name : Philippe Rochette

Nickname : Elvis

Years of experience : 23

Where you can meet him: Anywhere really. But mostly at Portes Orange.

Quand Philippe Rochette a fait le saut à son propre compte en 2007, il avait un seul point de service : le YMCA d’Hochelaga-Maisonneuve. « I sat at the table with my suitcases full of frames. People wondered what the hell I was doing there ". It's true that at first glance, guy-hanging-out-in-the-Y-lobby-with-suitcases might not seem like a very promising business model. Yet, almost 15 years later, Bonhomme à lunettes has more than 50 service points in Montreal, Longueuil, Laval, as well as in Lanaudière and the Laurentians. He also donated close to $90,000 to community organizations last year. Not bad for a guy who started off selling glasses between aerobics classes.

How did you become an optician?

By chance. I was 20 years old. I wanted to learn a trade. I opened the professions guide. I already had a DEC in Pure and Applied Sciences, and many accredited courses. Six months after graduating, I started a minor at UQAM in screenwriting. 23 years later, I'm much more of an optician than a writer.

Is there an interesting story behind your nickname ?

On karaoke nights, I always sing an Elvis song. My favourite ? Teddy Bear. (editor's note: we need a video of that one day.)

Fill in the blank: working at Bonhomme à lunettes is _____

to have the chance to work in accordance with your convictions, in a relaxed atmosphere, with just the right amount of humanism, professionalism, sincerity and humor.

What's your number one advice for clients ?

It's simple: Whether you're visiting us or a competitor, don't be afraid to ask questions, all your questions. Every question is relevant for your eyes.

You secret in leading this business ? 

Provide work conditions that make employees want to stay. Qualities like flexibility, being a good listener, remuneration, treating employees as equals, fostering a spirit of collaboration, and above all ... Never forget everything I hated about my former bosses !!