Is Loyalty in the Workplace a Dying Trait?

I think Loyalty in the Workplace is a dying trait. At the ripe old age of 33 I am considered a millennial. To many of the older generations it is my generation that is to blame for many things. To be honest from my own experience loyalty has nothing to do with my generation specifically. In my opinion loyalty is a cultural thing. It is not a generational trait.

What is Loyalty in the Workplace?

True loyalty is where the employer and employees make a conscious decision to stick by the other through both good times and bad. And they choose to do so because they have a common understanding that it is the done thing. “The other party would do the same for me”.

Did Workplace Loyalty used to be the norm?

No. It was never the norm from a generic perspective. However, there were many companies where relationships were built upon mutual trust and loyalty. When the Employers had hard times, the workers would dig deep to get their employer back on track. And when Employees needed support their employers would give them support in return. This was not every company. And I don’t want to view the past through rose tinted glasses. But nevertheless it did exist in certain workplaces. And when a worker got a good employer, they’d be wise to recognise that they should fight tooth and nail for it.

What’s Changed?

The first break was companies losing the trust of employees. Broken promises, take and no give back and hire & fire cultures. No wonder workers didn’t feel the same anymore. 30 years ago it wasn’t unusual for people to stay in a job for a decade. Now people change job every two to three years.

The impact social media has had on employer to employee relations is important in this change of dynamic. Employees now have more influence and power over a company. It is harder to hire and retain talent, so companies are resorting to basically bending over backwards to retain employees. It has gone from giving into counter offers to offering tons of benefits which were only reserved for the board not even that long ago.

Employees are actively keeping an eye out for better employment opportunities and even seem quite blasé about it. Therefore, in a number of cases it has not only shifted from employers breaking trust, but employees responding now they have more power.

What’s the issue with Employees getting their own back?

The problem is the imbalance. There are companies like ours who believe in providing loyalty to staff. Maybe it’s my nature, but for me loyalty is important. The issue is that for companies who want to offer loyalty and stick by staff where is the give back? We try to look for employees who want someone to give a damn about them and in return will give blood, sweat and tears. That is an increasingly rare trait to find.

I have no issue with a mistreated employee wanting their own back on a company that has wronged them. But my issue is with the culture of people only giving the acceptable minimum and seeing that as the right thing to do. I hear too many people giving the minimum and then feeling hard done by that the company hasn’t given them anything extra. Sure, some companies are just as bad but then all the more reason that when you do find a loyal, good intentioned and fair company to give them everything.

Loyalty in the Workplace Sum Up

I feel that too many companies make false promises, create fake environments and don’t reward loyalty. And I feel that it is culturally acceptable to a number of people more so than in the past to have no or minimal loyalty to a company and give the minimum acceptable performance without a second thought. But for any employee who bemoans companies, when you do find a loyal one, do not take it for granted. Work hard, give your all and stay loyal. It’s a rarity these days.

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