"I don't think you can live by the HR manual," says the council's director of human resources.
"Every situation and person is different and their needs are different, and people get a sense of loyalty when they're accommodated. People know that here, if they're having a problem and they need support, they can come to HR and we'll help them out."
The council - which is responsible for the certification and evaluation of physicians across Canada - does offer benefits that employees enjoy, including free bagel breakfasts once a month, on-site dry cleaning and massage therapy, as well as a generous policy regarding leave and short- and long-term disability.
However, Ms. Paquette says it's often not the perks that help the council attract and retain talent. "I hate to say it's a family because that seems cheesy, but there really is a sense of belonging, that we're supportive of each other," she says, adding that the organization's culture is particularly remarkable given that it's doubled in size over the past five years.
"People love the environment we have in our office, we team well together, and communications are open at all levels ... the culture is really key."
Ms. Paquette notes that the council's leadership is another important part of why employees enjoying being part of the organization, as it's clear that the top ranks care about the staff and are committed to making the Medical Council of Canada a terrific place to work.
The emphasis is on supporting staff and helping them develop both personally and professionally, which includes encouraging workers to use the council's sizable continuing education budget.
"We think everybody here can be a leader, and we really preach that," says Ms. Paquette.