We’re excited to welcome our new SVP of Talent Development, Michele Hamill, to the Distinguished family! Just a month into her new job, Michele shares a little bit about herself and what her role at Distinguished will entail.

Q: What are some of your passions outside of work?
MH: I am very passionate about trying new things…experiences, restaurants, places. I decided this year that I was going to learn to ice skate. I can tell you, it’s much harder than the little kids make it look. But they are very helpful picking me up off the ice when I fall (frequently). I am also passionate about volunteering. I work with the Literacy Foundation providing workforce readiness skills for individuals who speak English as a second language. I also work with Family Centers providing services to disadvantaged families.

Q: Describe one of your greatest life moments so far.
MH: Without a doubt, my greatest joy comes from my children. They are now 18, 19, and 20. Two are off at college and my youngest is in his senior year of high school. I can’t imagine that next year I will have three in college. They are all very different and amazing young adults. I couldn’t be prouder of who they have become.

Q: What enticed you to join Distinguished?
MH: First and foremost, it was the people and the culture. I started to get a sense of the culture as soon as I was sitting in the lobby waiting for my first interview. It happened to be on a day when the office had ordered pizza. Every person who walked by offered a big hello…and pizza! It was apparent that folks genuinely enjoyed each other and Distinguished. Secondly, I was incredibly impressed by how committed the leadership is to people development. I also appreciated the pride and passion for the business that came through in every interaction. I was so excited about the opportunity to work with smart, fun, and authentic people at an organization that considers “people” to be central to the success and growth of the business.

Q: What does your new role as SVP of Talent Development entail?
MH: The role of SVP, Talent Development is a new one for Distinguished. My primary objective is to build world-class talent capability so we can all realize our full potential.

Q: So what does that really mean?
MH: Well, it could look like new talent initiatives to build employee engagement or develop emerging leaders or build professional skills. If you think about talent management as a life cycle, my role entails how we attract the best talent, assimilate new colleagues from M&A activity, onboard, align goals, develop, coach, manage performance, manage careers, engage, retain, reward, promote, and plan for succession. It’s incredibly important to me that our unique culture is preserved as we grow the business and develop as individuals.

Q: What are some of your first observations from being in your new role at Distinguished?
MH: My very first observation was that what I observed and felt in the interview process is real. There is a genuine quality to the people and relationships here at Distinguished. I am really thankful for everyone offering me so much support as I learn about the people and the organization. I have also observed that lots of people and teams have done great work already in the talent space. I’m looking forward to joining those efforts to help us sustain and build on the good work in place.

Q: What do you hope to accomplish in your first year at Distinguished?
MH: In my first year, I hope to articulate and drive a comprehensive talent strategy designed to grow us as individuals and to grow the business. This will include collaborating closely with colleagues across the country to ensure our unique culture is factored into the talent initiatives that will build engagement and performance, a strategy that will be underpinned with high-impact, relevant, and valuable learning experiences.