DISHER is a nationally-recognized product development and business consulting firm with offices in Zeeland and Ann Arbor, Michigan and Indianapolis, Indiana. Our team is highly technical and diversified, serving in a variety of markets including automotive, office furniture, alternative energy, and medical. Our capabilities span from napkin sketch through launch, providing numerous opportunities for us to partner with clients in product and process development. DISHER also assists clients with business solutions and Talent identification and attraction.
Disher has three practices that they highlighted:
- Charity Checks: Each full-time member of DISHER receives this check during first payroll in May. The amount is based on the employee’s earnings, as well as profitability at DISHER. DISHER teammates may choose to donate this money to a charity of their choice, a family member or friend in need, keep it for themselves, or keep it for a later date. Many cool stories and reactions have come from these checks.
- Stewardship: DISHER employees are allotted 20 hours of stewardship time every year, which can be used during work hours. DISHER provides up to two weeks of stewardship time for missions and charitable work. Additionally, at a maximum of $3,000 per year, DISHER will pay 1⁄2 the cost of the trip for the DISHER employee, as well as 1⁄4 for spouses and kids who attend the mission trip with the DISHER employee.
- Voting: The purpose of this process is to involve as many DIS HER employees as possible to choose where DISHER’s charitable giving goes. Every submitted charity submitted by employees receives an equal base amount of money. On top of that, the remaining budget is spread amongst the nominees based on a weighted distribution of votes won. Our voter turnout is often close to 100%! When possible, it is tradition for the employee who submitted the charity to hand- deliver the check, and put a big smile on someone’s face.
For a company to replicate DISHER, the most important starting point is leadership and company values. In addition to these commitments off the top, a company must also consistently hire employees who align with the values of stewardship and giving. Other advice we would share from DISHER’s practices is to do stewardship in a way that involves as much of the team as possible. We have seen the excitement of our employees as they rally around a cause together. As a team serves alongside each other, their relationships grow stronger, they collaborate more freely, and trust one another.
It is also important to celebrate the organizations you give to. Make sure they have a chance give their thanks back to you. DISHER makes time during monthly staff meetings to bring in charities we give to, and give them time to share more about their work and talk about the impact we have had on them. This is easy to replicate by inviting charities in to talk at staff meetings, or setting up a lunch where many charities are invited to share about their work.