12/17/2014 05:34 pm ET Updated Nov 23, 2015

The Secret of Ugly Sweater Day

To date, we've been fortunate enough to acquire three great companies, which have enhanced our reach and expanded our breadth of services. That would be all well and good by itself, but the ability to build a cohesive group of folks with many different work experiences is quite another thing.

As I write, today is Ugly Sweater Day 2014. It turns out that it's a very special day indeed for our company and everyone who works here. It started as a social media campaign from our digital coordinator - "Let's run an Ugly Sweater Contest." I thought it was a good idea to stay in front of our contacts in a fun kind of way. What I didn't realize, however, was how much it would impact our team.

Somehow the idea morphed from an online social media campaign to a fun in-house event. The buzz started earlier in the week when staff saw the postings about the contest. Comments were, "I have just the right sweater." - "I know what I can do." - "If I can find mine, I will wear it."

On Ugly Sweater Day they showed up in all kinds of sweaters. Some were truly off the shelf "ugly" and others were creations of the very fertile minds that work here. It was amazing to watch as each one arrived and presented themselves to each other. Laughter filled the halls. More than one "OMG" was heard followed by belly laugh.

We had tinsel tiaras to go with a sweater made from a Christmas tree skirt, we had a sweater decorated with lint balls with the owner holding a lint brush, a sweater adorned with a Santa Claus sitting on a cotton cloud and others with Christmas ball ornaments, appliques of all kinds and even signs. Jewish staff members also participated with Hanukkah versions.

This type of outpouring of creativity, fun and group effort is what makes a company a great culture. It's what proves the point that employees are more than the roles they fill in any company. They are dynamic individuals, who bring many different important qualities to any endeavor.

If companies are fortunate enough to provide the opportunities and allow for such special days, they can feel confident that the entire organization will prosper well into the future.

Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to All

If you would like to read more of Greg's published articles please visit the Lorraine Gregory Communications Group website

This blogger graduated from Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Businesses program. Goldman Sachs is a partner of the What Is Working: Small Businesses section.