by Robert Campchero
Kimberly Puletz is a recent graduate of the Music Industry program at SUNY Oneonta, but her youth hasn't stopped her from making her way in the business. She graduated in 2004, and found her first job at a local music store in her hometown of Wappingers Falls, New York. I recently had a chance to talk to Kimberly over the phone and in addition to being kind and helpful, I could tell that she has a profound love of music.
Kimberly did her internship for the school at The Chance in Poughkeepsie, New York. After she graduated, the venue didn't have an open position, but she continued to work for them on weekends or whenever they needed extra help. She commented, "The Chance would call me and ask if I could work on the weekend. I always said 'yes'. I would cancel plans and always show up there because it ultimately led to me becoming their house manager."
After a while Kimberly was hired by the Sony BMG music group. She has been working there for three and a half years and currently holds the title of Coordinator of Mobil Sales. Kimberly said, "Everybody in the sales department really seems to love the work they do. We all work really close to each other and respect each other's abilities. Everyone on my floor has this die-hard love for music." She certainly stays busy working for Sony. Her current job duties include pulling weekly sales reports, creating team lists for account managers, hiring and training interns and most recently, she has been doing account management.
I asked Kimberly what her thoughts were about the current state of the Music Industry. She had a lot to say on the matter, stating, "I think we're at a crossroads where traditional products, services and business models are all competing for a piece of the pie just as much as their new counterparts." She also expressed her interest in the way that industry standards such as marketing and music formats are changing and adopting new business models so quickly. When I asked her what she thinks is most important to being successful in the music industry, she noted that flexibility is crucial and offered, "If an evolving business excites you, the music industry is a great place to be. The willingness to continually learn goes hand in hand with the business. You can't know what's going on unless you do your homework and understand the changes that are taking place."
Kimberly also commented about her time at SUNY Oneonta, and how it helped her in her career in the Music Industry. She cites presentations in lecture settings as great training for being active and insightful in meetings, which can be large or small. She also found practice interviews very important to her success saying, "'I've had to go through quite a few interviews since graduating, and the only thing that makes one better at interviewing is practice." Kimberly mentioned some classes that she found extremely helpful in her education about the Music Industry. She highlighted Music in the Marketplace for, "Laying a foundation for all that follows in the program, and giving a basic idea of how the industry is structured." She also talked about Legal Issues in the Music Industry saying, ""Legal Issues was important because it looked at cases that impacted the way the music business conducts itself and these issues are very important to understand."
Kimberly is a great example of how hard work and a love for music can really pay off in the Music Industry. When I asked her if she had any advice for current Music Industry students looking for the success that she has found, she had this to say. "Just remember, in order to stay and be respected in this business you need to have both passion and a willingness to work hard, not just one or the other. I think that it's okay if it takes some time to find an area where those two qualities are able to co-exist."