You’ve worked hard for your employer. You’ve been passionate about your job and have made many contributions. You’ve been recognized as a star player and are well thought of by everyone, team mates, bosses and customers alike. Yet, you’ve just been kicked to the curb by the new incoming boss. If you think this scenario sounds unlikely, think again. Too frequently I’ve seen loyal, dedicated and talented people punted when the new sheriff comes to town. The sad truth is that many companies allow this shoddy treatment of talent to happen. Even sadder is that these same companies may later wonder why remaining employees are less engaged.
Loyalty is a 2 Way Street
It’s a simple formula. If companies expect loyalty, then they must demonstrate the same. Even in a re-org where some roles are no longer needed, it remains the responsibility of the business to find new and appropriate internal matches for those affected. If this isn’t possible, then these individuals deserve the company’s support in finding a new opportunity with another firm. To do otherwise only reinforces perceptions that the employer is only out for themselves.
The fact is, it’s very hard for any employee to really want to give their all to an employer who views them as disposable.
Show Some Corporate Love
Many companies really need to take a longer term view of their human capital. Our economy has shifted away from producing things. In People are Not Cogs, Nilofer Merchant argues how it makes no sense in this new landscape to keep on talking about people as disposable, replaceable, cogs in the mix.
It is happy and engaged employees that drive organizational success today and into the future. There’s plenty of data to support this. The research firm Gallup conducted a meta analysis across 199 studies and 26 countries. It showed that high employee engagement positively impacts every business performance number:
- Profitability up 16%
- Productivity up 18%
- Customer loyalty up 12%
- Quality up 60%
Corporations demonstrating loyalty and commitment to their employees is a key ingredient to engagement and corporate success. So why are so many companies still ignoring this fact?
Doug, great article. You’ve nailed it. I really appreciate the term, “loyalty is a 2 way street”. This seems to be the secret sauce that so many employers don’t get. In all my years as an HR consultant, this often seems to be the lowest hanging fruit in many a company…pity it isn’t taken more seriously.
Timely article Doug. I’m presently supporting a client who’s accomplished much for her employer and yet in a recent ‘re-org’ has obviously been sidelined. She’s been a loyal, committed and high performing employee for over 13 years. Her feelings of betrayal are palpable and yes, her colleagues are all wondering when some similar fate might befall them. It is long overdue for many businesses to be more accountable to those that created their success. This would be a win – win.