Each season the Philadelphia Eagles organization is faced with time-sensitive, large-scale projects that require swift resolution. In 2013, heavy snowstorms blanketed portions of the East Coast. In Philadelphia, the blizzard was so severe that the stadium and seats of Lincoln Financial Field, where the team was preparing for a home game, were covered. On the field, the grounds crew rushed to make the yard markers visible.
With just hours remaining before kickoff, front-office employees from top to bottom grabbed shovels to clear the stands. Interns and coordinators worked alongside the chief financial officer, vice presidents, and directors. Kristie Pappal was not surprised. She joined the organization in 2007 and says this is just one of many examples of the attractive and team-oriented atmosphere that’s kept her with the team despite the high turnover within the sports industry. As the Eagles’ vice president of human resources, Pappal is working to sustain and even improve upon the organization’s well-respected culture.
Did you set out to enter human resources?
Kristie Pappal: I was a college athlete at Penn State and thought I would be a physical therapist. When an injury shortened my running season, I discovered it wasn’t for me. I got involved in campus HR internships and fell in love with the daily interactions of HR and the idea of providing internal customer service, knowing that every day would be a little different.