Samuel Palmeri Ph.D., SPHR, CBP, CCP
Sam is a Walsh College alumnus and, for the last eighteen years, a Walsh College Adjunct Professor. Dr. Lee Meadows' LinkedIn recommendation states, “Sam is a consummate professional with a knack for seeing the big picture and its subsequent details. He is an extremely knowledgeable HR professional who is abreast of current trends and their implications. He works well as both a team member and a team player. He is a credit to his profession.” Sam has spent more than twenty-two years in the field of Human Resources Management (HR) which included ten years as a Sr. Human Resources Manager with Sprint Nextel.
Interview with Sam:
What struggles did you go through during your time as a student?
"When I decided to go back to school to earn my master’s degree, I had been out of school for 11 years. I was also married one week prior to beginning my educational journey. I struggled with the amount of reading required and I had to develop a strong time management plan."
What is the best business advice you have ever received? What advice would you give a new alum or current student?
"Things have changed so much since I entered the workforce back in 1981. My guidance has certainly changed due to the changing times. I would say that in as much as you most likely will not spend your entire career at one organization, it is critical to be loyal and productive while working for any employer. When you are having more bad days then good, it is time to move on.
To current students: The memory of your grades will eventually fade away. However, the memory of your degree will last forever.
One of my favorite quotes is as follows:"You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one." ~ Anonymous
Be yourself, do your own thing and work hard!!!"
Where is your industry headed?
"We just had this discussion in one of my classes. The profession of HR Management has seen many changes. In short, we have moved from a tactical function to a strategic function over the years. While this is positive on one hand, it has also resulted in much job lose and an environment of employee self-service.
However, a recent trend is showing some growth in HR hiring due to the need to bring some “specialization” back to the role. Leadership is learning, the hard way, that mangers may not be equipped to manage risk like an experienced HR professional."
What is your greatest accomplishment?
My greatest accomplishment is earning my Ph.D. It had always been on my bucket list and I successfully defended my dissertation in January. The title of my dissertation is Surviving a Reduction in Force: The Impact of Flexible Work Arrangements on Employee Job Satisfaction and Work/Life Balance Following the 2008 Recession.
What are the most important decisions you make as a leader of your organization?
"My specialty was in human relations. I was called upon to make numerous decisions which would have a positive impact on one party while having a negative impact on another. As an HR professional, we walk a fine line of being a member of the management team and an employee advocate.
The most important decisions I made throughout my career where decisions which managed the risk of the individual and organization."
What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess?
What is the biggest challenge facing leaders today?
"Balance between ethical behavior and results/profitability."
What is one mistake you witness leaders making more frequently than others?
"They do not listen to those they lead."
What are a few resources you would recommend to someone looking to gain insight into becoming a better leader?
"Read The Leadership Challenge by Kouzes & Posner. In my opinion, the best book ever written on leadership."
What advice would you give someone going into a leadership position for the first time?
"Listen first and speak second. You have more to learn then you may think.
What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader?
I stay up on the changes within my profession and I listen to the students. I learn so much in each and every class that I teach."
Please join Walsh College in applauding Sam Palmeri in his continued successes by adding your comments below.
Contact Duc Abrahamson, alumni & Student Relations Manager to nominate an alumnus to applaud at (248) 823-1298.