After a very challenging 2010, Creative Dental Images in Dedham, MA, bounced back for a successful 2011. The staff was able to pull together to reduce remakes and even increase sales.
To reward his seven employees for all their hard work, Owner Joseph Traboulsi treated them and their families—18 people in all—to a seven-day cruise to Bermuda aboard Norwegian Cruise Lines. "My technicians work so hard and we're like a family. To be with them for seven days and see them smiling, relaxed and not stressed about work made the cost of the trip totally worth it," says Traboulsi, who covered $23,000 worth of expenses including rooms and meals.
To allow the entire staff to be on vacation at once, the lab shut down for one week in August—typically its slowest time of year—and notified its clients months in advance. As the date of the trip grew closer, excitement grew and the staff counted down the days on a large calendar in the lab. One technician's daughter even made t-shirts for everyone to wear the first day they were on the ship. The shirts featured everyone's name, the date of the trip and a large image of a ship with the words, "Going 2 Bermuda."
During the trip, many of the families met up each evening to see the nightly entertainment and all 18 came together one night for a formal group dinner. Traboulsi also enjoyed bumping into his employees and surprising them with drinks. "We'd run into Joe, he'd ask if I needed a drink and suddenly a bucket of beer would appear next to me," laughs Tom McLaughlin, a technician who's been with Creative Dental for four years. "He's a very generous man!"
Once they returned to the lab, Traboulsi says he felt the difference. "All of us felt renewed and morale was up," he says. "We became even stronger as a working unit, and our families grew closer, too."