We were developing an assessment for leaders when the CEO of a large company challenged us to add an attributeto our list. He said, "Effective leaders need to possess Enterprise Loyalty."He continued, "This is the ability to know if and when to support the decisions made by the company leaders. More importantly, it is the ability to disagree with a decision that might hurt the company in a way that is supportive and not toxic."
When we disagree with a decision that has been handed down to us by our leaders, we must decide three things:
- Am I disagreeing to pursue my own agenda or because I truly believe this to be wrong for the company at large?
- How will I address this matter with the appropriate decision-maker?
- Can I support this decision even if I disagree with it?
How we answer these questions will determine our integrity, character and loyalty. Some leaders use their influence to undermine and create a culture of toxicity when they disagree with a decision. Others may simply "check out" and passively not support the unpopular decision. To possess Enterprise Loyalty means to put the best interest of the entire organization as a top priority. It means addressing issues that damage the culture with honest hard conversations, and then move forward.
Enterprise Loyalty is a missing component not just in the corporate world but in personal relationships as well.Having the courage to address issues in a healthy way instead of bringing toxic selfishness to a relationship takes self-discipline and work.
To be clear, this attribute is not about agreement but about how we disagree.
Choose to develop Enterprise Loyalty in your relationships andyou will make a difference.