Four new Rising Stars have recently been chosen: Russell Potter, purchasing, Kacy McClain, customer service, Sherri Huschak, customer service, and Sarah Filip, customer service. These four team members will get to take part in many unique opportunities, including cross-training with other departments, one-on-one time with each Executive Team member, visits to each facility, a special program run by the Pittsburgh Penguin’s Organization, and the ability to work together on a focused project. We asked some of our Rising Stars what they were most excited about when it came to the program and what COE has done to help get them to where they are today.

We asked out Rising Stars a few questions about their experience to see what they were looking forward to the most as they start their journey to become their best and prepare for what comes next. 

Here are the questions we asked

  • Why did you want to be a part of the Rising Stars Program?
  • What are you most excited about with the program and what do you hope to learn?
  • How has COE helped you to get where you are today and what goals do you have for yourself for the future?
  • What is your favorite part about working for the company?
  • What do you think about the employee engagement offerings here at COE? 

Take a look at what our Rising Stars had to say.

Why did you want to be a part of the Rising Stars Program?

I think it is a great way to get cross-department training to better understand how the company runs, allowing me to help make other jobs easier, with potentially simple changes in mine.

What are you most excited about with the program and what do you hope to learn?

I think I am most excited about going to one of the other warehouses. It will allow me to meet other employees of the company, plus get a better feel for the issues that they face, and learn how I can make it better

How has COE helped you to get where you are today and what goals do you have for yourself for the future?

COE has allowed me to learn and grow quickly with the right training and always willing to help attitude. I would eventually like to become a manager someday.

What is your favorite part about working for the company?

My favorite part about working for COE is the family-oriented atmosphere.

What do you think about the employee engagement offerings here at COE?

The employee engagement is very well thought through at COE with programs such as the Penguins Partnership, Rising Star program, and the book clubs.

Why did you want to be a part of the Rising Stars Program?

I want to be as involved in the company as I can possibly be and expand my knowledge on every area.

What are you most excited for with the program and what do you hope to learn?

I am excited to be able to sit and learn with each department and get a better understanding with their roles and skills they use every day to make everything run smoothly.

How has COE helped you to get where you are today and what goals do you have for yourself for the future?

COE is always presenting opportunities and acknowledgments for the work we put in, which gives me the push to always do my best and have a positive attitude to want to strive for more. I want to be able to advance myself to have the knowledge to assist more with company progression.

What is your favorite part about working for the company?

That you are always treated as more than a number; you are a person, and more importantly, a family member.

What do you think about the employee engagement offerings here at COE?

By COE offering the employee engagement programs, we are able to be more involved and brought together as a company.

Why did you want to be a part of the Rising Stars Program?

It allows me to showcase leadership skills, in addition, to cross-department training to understand more within the company.

What are you most excited about with the program and what do you hope to learn?

I am most excited about the opportunity to meet new people and to learn more about the different positions with the company.

How has COE helped you to get where you are today and what goals do you have for yourself for the future?

COE has helped me enhance my customer service, time management, and problem-solving abilities. My hope for my future is to continue to move up within COE and strive to excel in the Rising Star Program.

What is your favorite part about working for the company?

My favorite part about working for COE is being able to work in a supportive and motivating work environment, that allows me to build solid relationships with my customers, as well as my fellow team members.

What do you think about the employee engagement offerings here at COE?

I think the employee engagement offerings here at COE are a good thing. They are helping the employees come together as a group and work as a team.

Even after work hours, our team members enjoy expanding their knowledge, by getting involved with different opportunities within the community. COE Distributing, along with the leaders, get involved with the community on different levels, including sitting on boards, volunteering, or attending networking events. When that same passion trickles down to the rest of the team members, a company filled with passionate employees is created.

MELISSA DYER

Melissa Dyer, one of our Purchasing team members and Rising Stars has been involved with the Fayette Leaders Academy. We sat down with Melissa to learn more about the program, how it has helped her at COE, and how she has grown because of the opportunity. We also got her feedback on how the Rising Stars program at COE has helped her grow, as well as, her favorite part of our Employee Engagement Partnership with the Pittsburgh Penguins.  

What have you learned as a member of the Fayette Leaders Academy?

In our very first session, we had the privilege of welcoming Dr. Emily Dennis as our speaker. We used the DISC Personality Test and Gallup Strengths Assessment to learn about how our strengths can influence our development at work and also how to work with different personalities effectively. In everyday situations at work, I go back to that initial session, and it proves very helpful.

What is the most valuable thing you have learned by being a member of the Academy?

I have learned to always strive to be a better version of yourself each and every day; never stop learning and growing!

What is the most enjoyable thing you have done as a member of the Academy?​

We have done so many fun activities, that encourage us to work as a team and show our strengths and assets. My favorite activity would have to be the Escape Room we attended. Working together as a team paid off – we did escape!

What have you learned the most through the Rising Stars Program?

Teamwork makes the dream work! Working with Tim, Paola, and Brittany on various projects is both rewarding and fun. A favorite opportunity of mine is the Scaling Up Book Club, where I enjoy listening to everyone’s ideas; it is amazing how one thought from one person can trigger so many good ideas within the group.

What has it meant to you being chosen for the program?

It is an honor to be a part of the Rising Stars Program and also the Fayette Leader Academy. It is truly a blessing to love coming to work every single day!

How do you feel about our Employee Engagement Partnership with the Penguins and what are you most excited for?

I think anyone could answer this one for me! I absolutely love the Penguin Partnership! I have been a Pens fan for as long as I can remember, and to me, this is the most AWESOME opportunity on the planet! I am excited for ALL of it. Looking forward to the book club, the deck hockey game, as well as everything else. I love the Warrior Helmet. After every game, I get so excited to see who the next recipient is in the Pens locker room, and to now do that here at COE, is just so much fun!

Through all of these opportunities you are a part of, what have you learned about yourself?

I have learned that there is always room to grow; the sky is the limit! Staying positive and working hard for a company that you are proud of is very rewarding

I feel the greatest tool that COE has given me is an opportunity. I started out as a receptionist almost 5 years ago. My manager at the time saw something in me that honestly I never saw in myself. Because of that, I was given the opportunity to take on different tasks in all aspects of accounting. It wasn’t until then, that I learned that I would best serve the company as an AR Collector, and at that point, I took it and ran with it. Here I am, almost 5 years later, sitting in my office as the AR Manager. I feel successful and I feel content.

And while my role hasn’t really changed, I am excited to continue to teach and guide the members of my team. Each day is a new experience with them. Each day is another day to learn and grow.

What I have learned over the years with the company is that our opinion matters and our opinions are valued. We are treated as equals and as a team; we are family.

The company recognizes who works by the core values that are instilled in us at COE, by implementing employee engagement programs, such as the newest one, with the Pittsburgh Penguins. These programs open employees up to several new opportunities from different areas of learning to experiences that may never have been received before. They give team members something to strive for, which is a win for all those involved.

I think my greatest strength taken from the core values is Teamwork. Even though I now have a management title, that does not mean that I am any different from any one else. It is important to me that my co-workers know, that if they need help with anything, or guidance on how to do something, that they can always depend on me to help in any way I can. We are not operating as separate departments; we are one united team, sharing and growing in five common values.

In closing, I really don’t have a specific goal for myself, but my goal for the department is to continue to drive down AR balances and to have all accounts stay within the terms of their account.

Fun facts: I have an obsessive addiction to the paranormal, spooky things and all-around creepy stuff, so obsessed that I want to retire to Salem, Mass to live amongst where the witches were back in 1693. Halloween is my favorite holiday and I absolutely adore black cats