It’s official: Loyalty is dead. When Peyton Manning, who is the Indianapolis Colts franchise, is no longer a Colt, we have proof that loyalty doesn’t always win out. We want to believe that our favorite players will stay because of the strong bond that has been built. At our core, we all want loyalty to win out.
Both as a fan and a business person, I want to believe that relationships matter. We tend to believe that if we treat others well and build strong bonds, this will somehow matter in the end.
Manning’s departure really has me thinking about loyalty in business. Are your clients loyal to you and you to them? Do you take the time to truly appreciate your star clients, or do you expect them to remain loyal to you regardless of your actions? Would you want your best, longest-standing, career-changing clients to leave? Would you be able to move on without them?
Sometimes, we forget that our clients have options. If we lose sight of that and let our service slip, we may find that we have lost our clients once it’s too late to do anything about it. In Manning’s case, he has options, but it’s a shame he has to use them.
I, of course, am not privy to all of the reasons a marquee player who is synonymous with the city and the team he plays for is leaving, but I’m sure health, winning and money had something to do with it. The experts say it’s good business. And in business we make very difficult decisions. But, when loyalty dies, I think “business” is a very sad state of affairs.
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Maribeth Kuzmeski is the founder of Red Zone Marketing, LLC, which consults to Fortune 500 firms on strategic marketing planning and business growth. For more information, go to www.redzonemarketing.com.