Loyalty - The Myth and the Message


It seems the word loyalty has come up in the news lately . It reminds me that the word, the term, can have broad definition, and both positive and negative connotations.

Does loyalty really matter to you ? Does it mean allegiance or obedience? devotion or duty? I believe loyalty just like performance is a result .

In business as in life we want, need the reliability , the faithfulness in our lives that can be construed as loyalty from an employee, a significant other, or frankly even a pet.

Loyalty SHOULD be the result of mutual respect , not blind faith, devotion or the notion of reward ....hence the pet analogy. (I'm loyal to my owner now where's the treat ?)

Loyalty in its broadest and most positive definition brings a wholly meaningful atmosphere to a relationship as well as a business culture. My opinion is to reach this the essential behaviors include:

  • Never ask for loyalty ...it is silently earned. Loyalty is felt , not announced.
  • Trust should always replace loyalty ..loyalty can be given out of fear of change, fear of losing your job.
  • As a new generation of workforce arrives, this group is looking for a meaningful and challenging work environment, not the gold watch or retirement party. You cannot simply receive loyalty based on the promise of a long tenure. As a leader , provide a great experience.
  • Respect for your colleagues , employees . Respect their opinion, respect their contradiction , their choice of work life balance and this in turn will provide you and your organization loyalty.

History has all too proven the failure of blind loyalty. When trust and respect are earned the positive result of loyalty will appear.