By Mindy Wolfle
July 6, 2018
I recently had the pleasure of meeting Linda Berman, development and engagement manager of The Corporate Source (Thecorporatesource.org/), through an outstanding connection-maker, my colleague Kenneth Renov, Esq. I was so impressed by the unique services provided by TCS, I decided to share my subsequent interview with Linda.
MW: Please explain what The Corporate Source does.
LB: TCS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the employment of people with disabilities and providing services leading to independence and fulfillment. Our outsourcing services include janitorial services, administrative, mail room and warehouse operations, porter and courier services throughout New York City, Long Island, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, utilizing a workforce comprised of 83% direct-labor employees with disabilities.
MW: What is the benefit to participating companies?
LB: People with disabilities are an often-overlooked pool of talent to help companies achieve a successful bottom-line return on investment, both financially and in terms of social responsibility. TCS shows business leaders that they can ‘do good while doing well’ by including those with disabilities in their workplaces. Our outsourcing model provides the full range of services from recruitment through implementation. Companies get the very best service to support a business function, while creating a more inclusive work environment with heightened morale for all their employees.
MW: Linda, what is your role in the organization?
LB: As development and engagement manager, my role is three-fold: First, to promote the incredible abilities of our 400-person staff. Our employees are consistently recognized for delivering quality services, combined with their exceptionally positive work ethics and productivity levels. Second, I partner with civic-minded organizations launching or expanding their corporate social responsibility programs as more diverse and inclusive workplaces. Third, I raise awareness of our mission through corporate, community and legislative events and initiatives.
MW: What’s the next big event on TCS’s agenda?
LB: Our upcoming NDEAM Champions Contest in celebration of October’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month will recognize many amazing New York City and Long Island companies generously providing opportunities for people with disabilities to find gainful employment.
MW: What is the benefit to TCS employees with disabilities?
LB: There exists a huge disparity between the general unemployment rate of less than 4%, compared to the harsh reality of nearly 80% unemployment among individuals with disabilities. TCS creates vital opportunities for more members of society to contribute their valuable skills. The competitive wages and benefits they earn from their hard work offers them financial independence, self-sufficiency and vastly improved quality of life.
MW: My favorite part of our conversation was hearing your workers’ success stories.
LB: One of the many that touches me most is a pair of our administrative employees. Work has provided a driving force for both individuals to demonstrate that they can collaborate extremely well together. They job-share due to the nature of their disabilities, and neither has missed a day of work in years; their supervisor raves that they are the best employees she has ever had. Both employees have found financial independence through work, as well as the equally important camaraderie that work provides to us all. Their story is not unique. We’d love to hear more success stories from other employers highlighting similarly wonderful contributions to the workplace.
Mindy Wolfle is the president of Neptune Marketing LLC and chief marketing officer of Vishnick McGovern Milizio LLP. She is a board member of the Social Media Association and a member of Women Economic Developers of Long Island and Public Relations Professionals of Long Island. Her LinkedIn profile describes her as a marketing/public relations/social media executive, writer, editor, educator, connection maker, semiotician and do-gooder.