Finding Your Sweet Spot

A New DISHER Culture Characteristic

DISHER’s mission, Make a Positive Difference, has driven our team behaviors creating a culture that was recently ranked 5th in the nation. These core behaviors are spelled out in our 12 Culture Characteristics (CCs), they’re talked about every month, and they’re lived out by our team members. When someone at DISHER says, Two Extra Things or Unvarnished Communication, there is clear understanding. The CCs help explain who we are as a company and they haven’t changed in over a decade. So, it was with great care and excitement that Finding Your Sweet Spot was added to our list of CCs just last month.

What Does it Mean?

It started as a discussion during our monthly Attract and Retain team meeting. One of our team members, Shawna Vite, had returned from a conference on personal development. Shawna was clearly passionate about the subject and felt that we could do more to encourage it. The rest of the Attract and Retain team agreed. We turned to our existing CCs to see if personal development was already covered. While several characteristics, such as Just Do It and High Expectations, tangentially touch on this topic, we did not feel that it was fully captured. We decided a new CC was needed.

Finding Your Sweet Spot - What Does It Mean

When we introduced the idea to Jeff, our President and CEO, his reaction was overwhelmingly positive. We just needed to iron out the details in terms of naming and content. It was quickly decided that our new CC should relate back to our annual personal evaluation tool called the DISHER Sweet Spot. A person’s sweet spot is where four criteria converge: what you love, what the world needs, what you’re good at, and what someone will pay for. When all four align, you have a satisfied customer, an energized and excited team member, and a better world.

It was also important that this CC conveyed the idea of a journey. No one has a static sweet spot. The four criteria will inevitably evolve or change over time. Instead of viewing the sweet spot as a final destination, we need to view it as a quest and continually grow as the needs of the market and the interests of the individual change. Ideally, team members will move in and out of their sweet spot throughout the course of their career without straying too far from the intersection point. For these reasons, we landed on Finding Your Sweet Spot (vs. Find) as our new CC.

Why Does It MatterWhy Does It Matter?

For DISHER customers, this characteristic enforces that when you work with a DISHER team member, you are getting someone who is passionate and knowledgeable about what they are doing. Passionate people produce better results! They are easier to work with and leave a lasting positive legacy. Plus, our customers are getting team members with exceptional, up-to-date skill sets because every team member receives 80-hours of personal development training each year.

For DISHER team members, we wanted to clearly communicate that an individual’s career growth is of the upmost importance to us. Team members are encouraged to build career plans with their coaches that put them and DISHER in a position to thrive. Every team member is empowered to shape their career as they see fit. Occasionally, this means that a team member may need to leave DISHER to reach their desired future state. In this case, DISHER will do everything in their power to help. For the majority of our team members, this empowerment strengthens the bond between DISHER and the individual because both are being put in a position to be successful at something they love to do.

Long story short, Finding Your Sweet Spot is another tool that helps DISHER live out the mission to Make a Positive Difference with our customers, coworkers, and community.


Written By: Brian LaFrence – Product Development Engineer
Brian has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan and is currently pursuing an MBA from Western Michigan University. As a Product Development Engineer, he specializes in bringing products to launch and supporting current production products. He is a big sports fan and is involved with youth sports programs through officiating.