A Day in the Life of Steve Price
PM Environmental’s Principal and Vice President sits down with us to provide a glimpse into his role, as well as share some advice for ethical behavior.
Q: Name, Title, Location
Steve Price, Principal and Vice President, Lansing, Michigan
Q: Tell us a little about your role and what you do.
My role is pretty unique in the company (and in the industry, really) as I head up the Risk Management group for the financial and lending clients. I wear a few hats with this role but mainly spend my day either Senior Reviewing due diligence (Environmental Due Diligence (EDD)/Site Investigation Services (SIS)) reports, advising clients on the type of work that needs to be done for their particular transaction, or meeting with existing/potential clients and explaining/selling our risk management philosophy. Also, in the last couple of years, I have spent a lot more time mentoring and job coaching younger staff, which I really enjoy!
Q: What would you say is the most interesting part of your job?
There are several interesting parts, really: helping clients get over the environmental hurdles before them, meeting new clients and explaining why our mouse trap is the best, teaching and mentoring younger staff with my 36 years of experience and watching them grow and develop, and meeting the challenges of this industry head-on and coming up with proper solutions, just to name a few.
Q: What energizes you about your career?
I love being a problem solver for our clients and getting them to the closing table as painlessly as possible. We take great pride in fully understanding the loan transaction, and tailoring our scope of work accordingly, so that the lender can make informed lending risk decisions in an efficient and effective manner.
Q: What accomplishment are you most proud of?
Since coming to PM in 2004 from the bank, we’ve developed this very unique Risk Management group, kind of within the EDD group. No other firm in our region has this experience or process, specifically focused on lender environmental risk management. We have now written and implemented environmental policy for over 70 institutions, covering over $170 billion in assets at last count, and no one can match this. Our risk philosophy, policy, and processes are the best (in my opinion, of course😊) and covers lender and borrower risk very well, without requiring excessive, expensive, and time-consuming investigation that is not always needed.
Q: What book would you most recommend for personal or professional growth?
Well, this is where I should tell you about the numerous books that have inspired and encouraged me and have helped in my professional development…but that would be a lie. I don’t read them. I know, I should but I haven’t. Maybe my biggest flaw??
Q: What does work-life balance mean for you?
Work-life balance to me is arranging your priorities at work and at home, so that you never have to apologize to anyone for anything. This is hard to do sometimes, and I have been on both ends of it in my career (mostly apologizing to my family). I am very thankful for the work-life balance I have been able to enjoy here at PM, it is a great benefit for all employees.
Q: What are some of the most important decisions you have to make as a leader?
Well, I can’t really think of a specific decision recently, but really a philosophy that I have had my entire career. It boils down to numerous small decisions I need to make daily, weekly, etc., and it’s this: if I can sit in a witness chair and defend my or our position as the honest, appropriate, and ethical thing to do, then I will put my name on it. Sometimes this forces hard and uncomfortable conversations with staff, clients, etc., when we make mistakes and need to fix them, or when clients don’t want to hear it. It will keep you and us from trying to defend a bad position, which we never ought to do.