MT STERLING, Ill.- Dot Foods recently launched a program to assist Illinois-based not-for-profit organizations enhance their communication, leadership and problem-solving skills by participating in Dot's employee training classes. Dot offers these courses at no cost to non-profit organizations and their staff.

"Dot opened several of its training classes to area non-profits in January and there's been an overwhelming response for each class we've offered," said Suzy Kassing, Dot Foods' training and development manager. "This is a robust program that helps non-profit leaders and employees build their skill sets to become more effective in their organization."

Several non-profits in the area have participated in the classes, including Brown County Mental Health, Two Rivers Regional Council, the YMCA, Quincy Public Library and Community Foundation of the Quincy Area.

"Dot has a great reputation in the community for a wonderful training department and the training program gave our staff a chance to step away from the library stacks and take time to build our skills individually and as a team," noted said Lucy Bordewick, marketing director, Quincy Public Library. "Most area non-profits operate on a shoestring budget and we have to make every dollar count. Thanks to the generosity of Dot allowing us to participate in their programs, we've gained additional training and professional development."

Dot currently offers 13 different courses to the non-profits, including Essentials of Leadership, Enhancing your Listening Skills, Speaking to Influence Others, Time Management, Written Communication for the Business Professional, Leading Change, Managing Performance Problems, Dealing with Difficult People, Having Feedback Conversations with Employees, Leading Meetings, Developing Others, Improving Personal Productivity and A Manager's Guide to Delegation.

"I've participated in several of the training courses offered by Dot and each has been incredibly informative and helpful for me," said Sandra Trusewych, community development director, Two Rivers Regional Council of Public Officials. "All of the principles and skills that were discussed can be applied to both for profit and not-for-profit entities. Middle management positions in a non-profit can be challenging and not many classes are offered in the region are free to us. Dot's program truly is making a difference in the way I work."

Classes are held at Dot's distribution center in Mt. Sterling or via webinar and are usually two to four hours in length. Currently, Dot is looking to add more classes to their non-profit offering as seats are full. Non-profits interested in the training classes may contact Jamie Lichtsinn at Jamie.lichtsinn@dotfoods.com.

The integration of non-profits into the training programs does not only benefit the non-profit employees. "The opportunity to have non-profit organizations in our training classes also benefits Dot employees through relationship building and our understanding of the challenges of the non-profit world.," noted Kassing.

Dot Foods Inc. carries 104,000 products from 600 food industry manufacturers and is the largest food redistributor in the United States. Dot Foods distributes foodservice, convenience, retail and vending food products to distributors in all 50 states. Dot Foods operates eight distribution centers in: Modesto, Calif.; Vidalia, Ga.; Burley, Idaho; Mt. Sterling, Ill.; Cambridge City, Ind.; Williamsport, Md.; Liverpool, N.Y.; and Ardmore, Okla. For information, visit www.dotfoods.com.