This will inevitably be one of those blogs where I ask you to think rather than provide a firm answer. It’s just that I’ve noticed some business people getting into trouble with loyalty issues recently.
In one situation, the CEO seems to view loyalty as belonging to him. In his mind, the board members, the employees, the vendors, the customers are all supposed to be loyal to him. That often means that anyone who disagrees with him isn’t being loyal. A consultant who is paid to provide an objective viewpoint is quickly dismissed if his/her conclusion isn’t that this CEO is always right. He denies that this is true, but it is so obvious to everyone else.
In another organization, the millennial generation employees are not inclined to be loyal to anyone but themselves. They have seen their Baby Boomer parents suddenly let go and their retirement savings reduced when the financial industry imploded. They don’t trust that Social Security will be there for them when they retire. They may like what they do, but loyalty to the company or the employer isn’t even an option.
The CEO of another client organization resists loyalty to him. He wants people to be loyal to the business, its mission and the results it achieves. He is concerned about where the company would be if loyalty is aimed at him and he is suddenly killed in a car accident or develops prostate cancer like his father did.
Often it is the truly visionary leaders, like Steve Jobs, who can generate loyalty for both them and the company. Nido Quebein seems to be able to spark that dual loyalty (for the CEO and the organization) as the Provost of High Point University in North Carolina. But that is rare these days. Too many CEOs view themselves as visionary because they enjoy doing new things. But if they are indecisive inconsistent leaders, they will get superficial loyalty from employees and vendors.
Do you know the role loyalty plays in your company?
Aldonna R. Ambler, CMC, CSP has earned the right to be called THE GROWTH STRATEGIST™. She has won over 2 dozen national and statewide “entrepreneur of the year” awards for the resilient growth of her international businesses across 4 recessions. Her midsized BtoB service, technology, and distribution clients get on…and then stay on…the published lists of the fastest growing privately held companies. All of her own service businesses (strategic planning, executive advisory, growth financing, talk show, speaking, search) help privately held midsized companies achieve accelerated growth with sustained profitability™. Ambler is wrapping up her 7th year hosting a weekly peer-to-peer-to-peer on line talk show at www.Business. VoiceAmerica. com and www.growthstrategistshow.com that features interviews with CEOs/Presidents of midsized companies (typically between $20 and 200 Mil/yr) sharing success tips about the growth strategy-of-the-week. Family owned businesses are being emphasized in 2011. Ambler is in the process of launching her 8th enterprise. She can be reached toll free at 1-888-Aldonna or at Aldonna@AMBLER.com.
Known as The Growth Strategist®, Aldonna Ambler built and grew a suite of companies to help midsized B2B companies achieve accelerated growth with sustained profitability® A Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), Ambler has addressed over 2000 audiences and hosted a syndicated online talk show about growth strategies for 9 years. As a growth financing intermediary, Ambler raised over $1 Bil dollars for midsized companies. The winner of over 2 dozen prestigious national and statewide "entrepreneur of the year" awards, Ambler is available to speak about “profitable growth during any economy” and/or serve on the board of a growth-oriented privately-held company.