Why Loyalty Matters: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #13

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Below are my personal notes of Why Loyalty Matters. These highlights were what I used to write my personal development book, Wiser Next Week, a condensation of many different self improvement books

Why Loyalty:

  • No man is an Island
  • Loyalty is about accepting the bonds that our relations with others entail and acting in a manner that defends and reinforces those relations
  • Loyalty is synonymous with “my” (my friend, my club, my nation). 
    • Taking psychological ownership
    • We take ownership because it adds value to our lives. But ownership entails responsibility. That responsibility is in the form of loyalty
  • Fulfillment comes only when we give ourselves to others. Loyalty like love is given first. Given over time, through difficulties and trials, leads to mutual loyalty
  • Loyalty binds people together, good times and bad. Its the means by which principles reign over self interest
  • Loyalty is the manifestation of our common humanity

Building Loyal Relationships:

  • The object of our loyalty must perceive we have acted and will continue to act loyally
  • “I will be there for you.” This is the loyalty that differentiates friends from acquaintance, companion from escort
  • Loyal companions can rely on one another, its interdependence 
  • Forgiveness:
    • Keep in mind even the most loyal relations are open to betrayal, conflict and negative outcomes. 
    • Good fences may make good neighbors, but a wall with no gates is in itself a prison
  • Building Loyalty Checklist
    • Devote enough time to the relationship with them
    • Stand up for them, even when it’s uncomfortable or risky
    • Celebrate their success without envy
    • Support them during difficult times
    • Hold fast to promises and information shared in confidence
    • Show appreciation and commitment to the future of the relationship
    • Keep in mind that social bonds require time and consistent effort to develop
    • Make it apparent through actions and deeds what the other person stands to gain from the relationship
    • Remember to be perceived by the other party as having done this

Economics of Loyalty

  • Employee Loyalty
    • Massive layoffs often leads to declines in customer satisfaction
      • Employees not laid off are often less enthusiastic about their work, they feel less a part of the community. Once this communal bond is lost, work becomes “just a job
      • Employees are only as loyal to the company as they believe the company is loyal to them
  • Customer loyalty requires from employees:
  1. Capability: Employees are trained and equipped to deliver the goods and services
  2. Satisfaction
  3. Loyalty: Loyal employees are more likely to suppress short term demands for the long term benefits of the organization
  4. Productive
  1. Profitable Loyalty: Not all customers that are loyal will generate a profit. Some are always price driven, others don’t buy enough and others demand too much
    1. Learn to discern which customers are worth investing in
  • Loyalty to others at work, such as peers and supervisors, most strongly impact our happiness at work
    • Developing relationships with organizations change our perception, it becomes “my bank” and “my school”
  • Toxic Loyalty
    • Cronyism: the appointment of friends to power, is a corrupting dark side of loyalty
      • Appointing unqualified people to positions of power does not serve the public interest, it betrays public loyalty
      • When obedience supersedes the objective of your position, that is the true sin
      • Cronyism destroys merit systems and with that the incentive to improve is destroyed
    • Loyalty cannot override justice without harming the organization
    • Never ignore your moral compass. But remember that you bare sole responsibility for your actions when adhering to your moral compass
  • Our perception of self is highly influenced by those around us
    • Ask: Who is having the greatest influence on my thinking? Do I want to be like them
  • If your loyalty to a relationship influences you negatively, then the relationship is toxic. While it may be repairable, it is not sustainable in its current form without damaging you. 
  • Loyalty should never be unconditional, we must differentiate toxic loyalty from healthy loyalty
  • Alliances of Convenience
    • The problem with calculative loyalties based on challenging a common enemy is the tenuous nature of such relationships
    • Relationships based on conditional loyalty can morph, leading to tentative friends turning into enemies
  • Teaching Loyalty
    • Loyalty is the result of personal commitment
    • As young children lack the mental capacity to commit, they can’t be loyal necessarily, but they can learn the preliminares of loyalty, mainly perseverance, responsibility and respect for others
  • “To educate a man in mind but not in morals is to educate a menace to society.” Teddy Roosevelt
  • Loyalty is an idealized human existence, a connection with invisible aspects of our social existence
  • Societal change occurs not from a natural occurrence, but starts from loyal citizens, people who believe they’re part of something bigger than themselves, that scrutinize issues and challenge conventional wisdom
  • We need to provide children with:
    • Heroes: an ideal to strive for and devote loyalty to
    • Critical thinking abilities: identify issues and view them objectively to discover a solution
  • We too need heros, heros that are inspirational and aspirational (that is, to stimulate excitement and incite ambitious action), or else our best days are behind us
    • That hero is a person devoted to a cause that unites many as one
  • Its no virtue to be loyal to oneself, Loyalty extends beyond the self
  • Loyalty is investing our minds, will and spirit into creating something greater than we alone can achieve. 
    • Loyalty means investing the time to care for the bonds we cherish in our lives. It is the lifeblood of relationships
  • “You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result.” Mahatma Gandhi

If these brief notes, peaked your interest in Why Loyalty Matter , you can check it out on Amazon here.

And be sure to check out my book, Wiser Next Week.

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