Years ago, companies valued worker loyalty and rewarded it with gold watches for longevity, hams for the holidays, and company-sponsored family picnics. Today, employees face reduced or non-existent benefits, part-time work, furloughs without pay, and limited career paths. Often times, the only way to get ahead is to change jobs or even change fields of work.
While job-hopping, or frequently changing jobs, used to be a red flag for hiring managers, it has become more acceptable, perhaps even commonplace. That doesn’t mean, however, that employers don’t value company loyalty. They spend resources on orientation and training, and look for, and expect, a return on their investment.
No matter how few months or years an individual works for a company or agency, doing a good job, even doing an outstanding job, should be the goal. A cutback in benefits should not equate to a cutback in personal effort. Instead, remaining professional and committed until a new opportunity is found and secured shows integrity and maturity.
Additionally, while employed, companies deserve employee loyalty. It goes without saying that proprietary information must remain confidential, even after a move to a new job. What some employees fail to understand, though, is that publicly complaining about the company or putting rants about a supervisor on social media, reflect just as poorly on the individual doing the complaining. If discovered by a potential employer during a background check, this is not only considered a red flag, but it may be an eliminating factor.
Coaching Tip: Company loyalty has changed from both sides. Companies may not try as hard to keep employees, and employees may not remain at one company for years at a time. Job hopping is no longer a negative, but may actually be the only way for a young employee to move ahead. While employed, however, company loyalty is important, working hard is a measure of personal integrity, and publicly denouncing an employer is simply foolish.