Loyalty is alive and well

Leadership Coach Thoughts: Meaningful Work Builds Loyalty

I keep hearing how nobody is loyal anymore. You know, “Those millennials just want to be given everything and they don’t want to work for it.” Not true. As a leadership coach, I have seen so much evidence to the contrary. Look around. Look in the mirror. People are working harder than ever and it’s not for individual fame and fortune. Loyalty is very much alive. The thing is, loyalty is a two-way street. What’s gone is blind loyalty. Nobody is going to stick around for 20 or 30 years on the promise that, in the end, they’ll be rewarded. That’s not loyalty, it’s foolishness. It can even be called laziness. Every one of us, whether we’re 22 or 92 is ready to be loyal. We just need a reason. When our work is meaningful, when we’re trusted to do our jobs without being watched over, and when we have opportunities to keep learning and growing…if all of that is in place…we will not only stay put, we will work extra hours, bring all of our energy and effort to bear, and do it again tomorrow. It’s when organizations and the people running them break our trust or trample a value or two that we will seek out somewhere else to be loyal. I think about this not only in terms of business, but in terms of life, as well. If I want someone to be loyal to me I need to always, always, be worthy of their loyalty.