The Importance of a Loyal Employee Part I of II

In times of economic progress and a shortage in the labor market, the importance of loyalty for companies is getting ever greater, as competition for talent is increasing. A company naturally wants to retain talented employees. Companies are investing more time and money in employee development which means turnover is becoming more expensive.

In times of economic slowdown, the immediate necessity of employee loyalty is less clear. However, it is still vitally important. True, employees will stick to your company in economically rough periods, but do they have the right motivation? Slacking on important issues for employees will not affect a company in the short term, but in the long run, it may have a devastating effect on your talented workforce. They will be the first to leave when the opportunity arises.

During economic strife, it is good and often necessary to re-evaluate your staff and to see where you need to cut back in order to become healthy again. But this does not mean loyalty is less important. It remains vitally important in the places it will hurt most to lose employees. Periods of economic boom can often mask problems within organizations that are only uncovered during an economic downturn.

One of the biggest misconceptions about company loyalty and employee retention is that he or she is loyal because they have worked for the company for many years.  It is thought that these employees tout the company brand.  This is the first mistake that most companies and business professionals make.  An employee who has been working for your company for a long time is not necessarily loyal, nor do they necessarily buy into the company’s culture or support its growth goals.  According to Glassdoor, an un-loyal employee can have a huge negative impact on current and future employees and recruiting

Definition of a loyal employee, according to Indeed.

Employee loyalty is when an employee believes in a company’s values and mission feels valued and appreciated and plans to stay with a company for a long period of time. When employees have loyalty to a company, they are often invested in its success, work hard to reach goals, and feel like they’re making an impact. Such employees are faithful to the company; possess strong feelings of care, responsibility, and bonding.

However, this is a two-way relationship.  If a company wants an employee to be loyal and dedicated to the company, a relationship of mutual respect needs to be nurtured; this is especially important today, as loyalty has a completely different meaning than it had twenty years ago. 

For example, there was a time when people who worked for a company would be overjoyed just to find out that they had been named “Employee of the month” or received some sort of recognition from their employer.  This can be true in today’s times, but it is extremely rare.  Now, people expect more from the ones in authority and won’t stand for anything less.  Instilling loyalty in a worker takes work.s look at what makes a “loyal” employee.

Qualities of a Loyal Employee

Perseverance, dedication, and leadership

Companies need to understand employees work for both the company and themselves.  When a worker does their job with all their might and is coming from a genuine place, they are being loyal to themselves as well. 

Truly dedicated people will always go the extra mile because they already have that natural drive in them.  They don’t see the task as just a job to get done.  They see it as an opportunity to help the company grow and to advance.  A loyal employee will almost always have the natural motivation to do their best and work to get things done as efficiently as possible. They will look for ways to improve and embrace the changes that help the company move forward.  

Pride and respect for the corporation

If you feel that the employee has a negative mindset towards their job or the company, it will soon begin to show in their actions.  This is something that transfers to almost everything in life.  It is known that people who have animosity towards anyone or anything about their job will either quit or develop some sort of depressive energy if they are not able to quit.  This is not just detrimental to your relationship with the employee, this can be bad for business as well.

Inquisitive and ready to learn

It is always a beautiful thing to see someone that is eager to advance and learn more about something they are passionate about.  With so many new advances and improvements happening in the world, it is important for an employee to stay updated and be willing to adapt to the changes. If you notice this in a person, this is a huge sign of dedication.

Shared purpose and values

Most employees are there to advance and get better and better at their job for the sake of the company’s growth and for themselves.  Employees who have a shared purpose and feel connected to the goals of the company will most likely stay with the organization for the long term. They understand it is important to build good connections with other employees in the company and the need to understand the culture they will be working in. Loyal employees know that what you most need to hear, is what you least want to hear: that your ideas may not work, that your point of view is off, that you made a mistake. They’ll tell you because they know that though you may not care much for what you hear, you care tremendously about doing what is best for the company and the employees. This is shared values. This builds a community of alumni that support your business no matter where their passion takes them.

Next week, Part II of II…Why should you care about employee loyalty?

“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to”Richard Branson.

 

What do you do special for your employees?  Or as an employee what would you like to see leadership do more of?

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