What makes a Top Workplace: We asked people at our 55 Top Workplaces why they love their jobs. You’ll find their answers throughout this special section.
Destiny Pistone and Deanna Williams said the real payoff at Developmental Disabilities Resources Inc., comes from working with the people the agency supports – those who have developmental and intellectual disabilities, and their families.
“We get invested, and their success is our success,” said Pistone, a qualified professional at DDR.
Pistone said the field is “not for the faint of heart, and it’s changing all the time,” because services like the ones they provide and supervise, such as respite care to relieve family members who are primary care providers, are contingent upon Medicaid funding.
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But she noted that the agency tries to smooth out those ups and downs and recognizes that, “What we do is not always easy and that it takes a lot of commitment.”
Williams said the work can be physically and emotionally demanding, and DDR tries to acknowledge that in ways great and small, whether that be with increased flexibility for employees to handle their own family situations or even just handing out ice cream bars on a late workday.
Pistone said DDR remains aware that, “It takes all of us, from IT gurus to accounting, to provide the service at the level we want to.”
Williams found it hard to step back when she became the agency’s director of community outreach and had to give up some cases. “You get so attached. You know what they want, you know what they need, you’re a part of the struggle. And they don’t want you to let them go.”
Those kinds of ties and feedback from families lets them know their work is valued and keeps them motivated, Pistone and Williams said.
Williams added: “I may not be able to make a difference for everyone, but I can make difference for somebody.”