Creating Meaning with Tradition: How Culture and Customs Nourish Our Business

David Pritchard, President and COO
| Jan 30, 2024

Each year, I am always quite reflective in November, December, and January. This time of year, the blessings I have in my life surface in a special way – notably through people, both at Gorbel® and in my personal life. It is a time, for me, to contemplate the importance of relationships, and certainly traditions. In my family, we have cherished traditions for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Traditions come in many forms and are celebrated differently, especially on a large team like we have at Gorbel®. 

Our team members celebrate traditions that have been refined over time for events like birthdays, anniversaries, memorials, seasonal changes, and holidays. Traditions respect our history, family interactions, and community relationships. This is so important, and rich in culture. The thing about traditions is that they are important in both our personal lives and business settings.  

Gorbel® – as a business – has so many important traditions that infuse that rich culture into the work that we do and our Mission to Improve People’s Lives. Join me in reflecting on some annual Gorbel® traditions and how they enrich the life that we enjoy every day inside and outside of work:

Support of local communities in Canada, Alabama, Arizona and New York – whether it be through United Way or various food drives. New York’s Thanksgiving Dinner Drive with the Dmitri House and a Christmas Toy Drive with the Cameron Community come to mind.

Dmitri House Thanksgiving 2023
An employee's child proudly smiles while preparing Thanksgiving food baskets to donate to local families through our partnership with the Dmitri House.

Carnival of Caring in the summer to support organizations like Wounded Warriors.

Strategic Refresh takes place each fall and creates a space to plan our business activities for the following year. It is our Leadership’s way of ensuring that we are acting as good stewards for our employees and for the health of the business.

Holiday Parties for each of our locations provide the opportunity to honor the season and more importantly, each other. We are a special team!

New York Holiday Party

Holiday Lunches
and Gorbel® gifts for all employees celebrate the fact that we are a connected team, collaborating with each other to provide extraordinary customer experiences.

New Employee Orientation (NEO) where we warmly welcome our newest employees to Gorbel® with a two-day orientation process. We all share the experience of attending NEO.  We take the time to share the history of Gorbel, where we show up in the market improving people’s lives (our Mission), and share our Strategy Map which guides our actions throughout the support our growth, achieve our Mission, and celebrate our foundational values.  

Monthly WARM Meetings where we recognize those celebrating their work anniversary, whether it has been one year or twenty-five.

Quarterly All In Meetings where Leadership has the opportunity to be very open and transparent about the State of the company and share what’s new in the business or leading to continued growth.

Our Recreation Committee members who plan Ice Cream Socials, Happy Hours, February chocolate events, and more. Every location has its own special events that their Rec Committee keeps alive each year. 

Seabreeze Picnic 2023
A collage of photos from the most recent company picnic held at Seabreeze, which is organized annually by the New York Recreation Committee.

Leadership Retreat when all leaders within Gorbel® meet every fall to collaborate and plan for the future.

These are just a few of the many traditions within Gorbel® that allow us to celebrate each other, the collaboration that happens every day, and the events that support the health of our business.

I’d like to take a moment to directly address our incredible employees  — thank you for your contributions and support of our Gorbel® traditions. It’s impressive to imagine how each one of you contribute to our shared culture and make a difference every day. Gorbel® is blessed to have you as a part of our team that is shaped by your uniqueness. Without you, our Mission to “Improve People’s Lives” would not be possible.

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