From Spa Associate to Director of Esthetic Operations - Jaclyn Palmieri's Hand & Stone Story

I like to think of myself as the true definition of a Hand & Stone ‘homegrown’. I started my Hand & Stone journey in 2015, as a spa associate. I came to the team with previous spa franchise experience and sought after a new ‘home’ to grow my career with a vision and values that I felt personally aligned with. When I started at Hand & Stone, I had just finished skin care school and was attending college for my bachelor’s in business marketing, so I needed the flexibility that Hand & Stone grants with late nights and weekends (this is not only a perk for clients-but employees too)!

During this time, I was working at the Brick Hand & Stone, under our first franchisee, Maria Cermatori. After about six months, I transitioned from spa associate to esthetician. I truly found my passion in assisting clients on their skincare journey, developing connections with them and overall healing people inside and out. Maria had always advocated for my growth trajectory and professional capabilities. A quote that she had repeated that stuck with me was “You have to treat everyone you meet as if they are the most important person in the world” and this was one of the most helpful quotes in developing my esthetics career.

While working in the spa I met my current leader, Lisa Rossmann. When I started, she was our spa’s operations manager and I remember the first time I met her, we were sitting in the office, and we were role-playing different client interactions when she asked if I would ever want to assist with the new spa opening trainings. I explained to her that I do love working at Hand & Stone as a spa associate, but esthetics is my passion, and I was soon to be going in the ‘back of the house’ but to keep me in mind for other opportunities.

Jaclyn & LauraI remember I was sitting with my manager discussing where I saw myself in 3-5 years and I couldn’t describe what I wanted. I remember saying “corporate skincare”, but I didn’t know what I necessarily meant by that. I knew I loved the skincare and esthetics realm but would love to be involved in the decision-making, development, and growth of the business. A few months later, my manager said Lisa would no longer be our operations manager, as she was promoted to a brand-new position, Director of Esthetics, and I knew at that moment- that was my career goal, that was where I saw myself.

As I was finishing up my business degree, I needed a marketing internship and Maria was able to contact Jack Bachinsky, our CMO, to place me as a social media intern. I learned a lot during this time about social media and franchisor marketing and was able to get my first taste of corporate life. This experience confirmed that working for Hand & Stone Corporate was where I wanted to be, but I wanted even more.

After finishing my business degree, I had been working as a successful esthetician for a few years and knew it was time to build upon my career. I emailed Lisa my resume, hoping she would remember me. I was then brought on as a corporate esthetic trainer, assisting with the esthetic training of new spas or any that had requested it. I learned during my time in this position how to best support my current team of esthetic trainers and ultimately how estheticians learn best. In 2020, I was brought on as the Esthetic Operations Manager and in January 2022, was promoted to Director of Esthetic Operations for both U.S. & Canada, a role I sought after many years ago. Lisa has been the most supportive mentor to learn from, which is extremely beneficial since I get to learn from the person who laid the foundation of the esthetics program.

Jaclyn corp trainer

During my time on the corporate team, I have assisted in the implementation of many innovations, most notably the Cryoskin launch. I am also responsible for the training, education, vendor relations, and operational support of our esthetics program. I take tremendous pride in our esthetic program of advanced services, performed by some of the most talented estheticians within the industry. I believe I have earned the respect of our estheticians by being someone who has lived it, breathed it, and ultimately every day strives to make our esthetics program stronger. I have shifted my passion from my clients, to helping estheticians become successful in their careers but assisting our franchisees to build strong esthetic businesses for themselves within their spas.