Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Loyalty is a Two Way Street

I have noticed negative mutated motives of individuals and institutions as I have matured through the years. Once riveted by the simplicity of the "Golden Rule" whereby we treat others the way we would like to be treated, I have noticed it has melted away and practically vanished from our world of fast-paced work lives and incessant greed for more.

I now understand why our elders used to say "an idol mind is the devil's workshop." Left to our own devices, our "human nature" leads us down the path to no good. Trying to "keep up" is fruitless and so we're tempted to revert to schemes and methods that are unscrupulous.

The grandest relationships are those in which each entity supports, encourages and nurtures the other. They put their own interests second and if both parties use this model, both are very satisfied with the results. Treating each other the way we wish to be treated.

Loyalty works the same way

When we honor and respect the other party and are treated with the same dignity and respect, we both win. Loyalty requires we behave in a manner that complies with the rules upon which our relationship is based. We don't steal from our employer and they reimburse us on time and in full measure. Our employer expects us to perform our jobs to the best of our ability with due diligence and we appreciate the benefits that come along with our employment.

We remain loyal to our partners, our teammates, our colleagues and our friends and expect them to return the favor in kind. At least that's how it's supposed to work. When we find out we have been betrayed by our friends or partners, we are surprised and upset and want to understand what the reasons are for their betrayal. We experience a loss of faith in those individuals or institutions that have returned our loyalty with a betrayal of trust. Usually, we develop a callousness to the spirit of friendship, teamwork, marriage or whatever the case is in a particular broken relationship. The truth is that relationship is broken. Sometimes they can be repaired but too often they cannot.

The relationship of employee and employer has undergone a change in recent history and to its detriment has plagued our society with a dysfunctional work environment. Today it is quite common for employers to expect loyalty from its employees without returning the favor completely. The greed that has seeped in on the part of the employer requires the same diligence on the part of the employee but with few guarantees in return. You might say economics created this devaluation and that is a component of the greed factor. In general, however, it is the lack of respect for the other party that is the root cause of the breakdown in loyalty.

The result is very unfortunate in that now the employer sees no reason to nurture the relationship the way they once did and the employee has an excuse not to. So where once there was a win, win situation we now have a lose, lose. Neither party is loyal to the other and it is evident in the turnover rate and profit margins.

Who musters their best effort for an employer who lays people off if the economy takes a dip? How loyal would you be to a company who fired anyone whose employee evaluation was below a certain value? How many employers are increasing their employee's benefits? Too few to really matter. The trend is in the opposite direction.

Is it possible to trust someone or something you do not believe is loyal to you? No, loyalty is a two-way street. If you expect loyalty, your best bet is to deliver it in kind. Treat your relationships with others the way you want to be treated and remember this when you have expectations about the other person.

See our capabilities at Responsive Web Design