Finding Meaning in Northeast Indiana

June 27th, 2018

Business Development Intern, Sam Dvorak, Shares his Experience at the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership 

When I first strolled into the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership’s newly renovated office on a picturesque summer morning, I was greeted by a team member who immediately guided me into an all-staff meeting. As I took a seat in the crowded conference room, the Business Development Team instantly handed me materials about the Vision 2030 framework that CEO John Sampson was presenting. There was a clear level of buy-in and excitement from the team throughout the dialogue.

As a result of my experiences over the past month, I feel fully immersed in the Partnership’s activities. I have frequently connected the actions of the organization to the lessons that I learned this last year as a freshman at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Last semester, I enrolled in Martine Haas’s Management 101 course. With an Organizational Behavior Ph.D. from Harvard University, Professor Haas has an array of experiences that have provided her with knowledge about what truly makes an organization tick.

One of the lectures that particularly stood out to me was her discussion, “People: Developing & Motivating a Diverse Workforce.” In this lecture, I learned that job performance can be evaluated in the following manner:

Finding Meaning in Northeast Indiana

Simply put, “Can they do it? Will they do it? Do they receive the support they need?”

Many regions throughout the country have residents with the knowledge, skills and abilities to move their communities in the right direction. Few communities have the support systems in place to motivate residents to take action. I have discovered in my time with the Partnership, Northeast Indiana has the unique, tightly-knit community that motivates those who call it home to use those skillsets to push the region forward.

Members of this team and this community do not make strides for improvement for the extrinsic rewards of praise and recognition. Rather, the intrinsic rewards of impact and responsibility provide purpose for all players that participate in our region’s economic development.

I know that every project I complete is helping the region inch closer to the goals of Vision 2030. As a member of the Business Development team for the remainder of the summer, I will be creating updated profiles for our region’s 11 counties and researching company leads for potential development in Northeast Indiana. By receiving feedback and support from the team and our stakeholders, I have experienced a great deal of personal development over the past month.

Professor Haas identifies “meaningful work” as one of the main components of increasing motivation and job performance. As I quickly learned during that first morning in the office, being a member of the Business Development Team at Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership means that I can be sure that I am having a positive impact on our community each day that I step foot in the door.

Now that’s meaningful.


-By Sam Dvorak, with the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership