So today we are talking about company loyalty! One of our listeners, Nicole, who is based in Germany, sent us an email. Her company basically gave her an ultimatum: move to Spain or leave along with the rest of her team. Nicole is not sure what she should do. She’s never been to Spain before, doesn’t speak Spanish, and does not want to leave her family, friends, and life behind.
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"These days companies don't give a damn about employees at all."
Now this is quite an asshole move. Why? Nicole’s company has given her an impossible choice. The main point is that she has been fired. The “opportunity” in Spain was not really that. It was either Spain, or nothing. What kind of choice is that?! We see this more and more often, specifically in bigger companies that don’t care about the people who work there. I often see a disconnect, especially with people who are older than 30. They have the same loyalty to their companies their parents’ generation. These days companies don’t give a damn about employees at all. This is especially true the bigger the company gets. And they really have no loyalty to you when they are a publicly listed company because the stockholders control it!
"These people are only interested in what comes out of the company, not the employees!"
The stockholders are like mosquitoes that do not care about the horse that they own. All they care about is the blood that they can suck out of it. These people are only interested in what comes out of the company, not the employees. Now going back to Nicole’s example: I’m not even sure if the position in Spain would have the same conditions as in Germany. My advice to Nicole would be to forget your company! Screw them. Go on sick leave and start interviewing for other companies. Better yet, make them pay for your move to Spain then leave them there and find a position with a different company.
"Eat or die is not really a choice!"
Now is your time for revenge! One option is not a choice. That is an ultimatum! Eat or die is not really a choice. Yes this company gives you money, but you give them a lifetime. Remember, money comes and goes but your lifetime does not. I can see loyalty from bigger companies getting worse and worse, so do not overstate your loyalty!
Stay in lead!
OLAF KAPINSKI 🙂
Good morning, good afternoon and good evening and welcome back to the Live It Lead IT podcast. Just before we start with the program,
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So let’s go into this one and Musab you have a question for us all.
Not a question from me per se. One of our listeners, Nicole, who is based in Germany, sent in email. She has a conflict.
Her company decided to let her and her team go and move their base over to Spain. They offered her a position there, but she’s not sure what she should do. She’s never been to Spain before. So what do you think she should do?
Dear Nicole, you will you have received the link to this podcast episode after we received this email. So this is made. This is not news to you so I can talk about the real stuff now.
Well, what we’re talking about is a company that had this department.
They decided to close this department, threw all the people out, Nicole included, build everything up new in Spain and then offer Nicole this position in Spain knowing that she has never been to Spain before and that she doesn’t speak Spanish.
This is quite an asshole move. Why am I saying? Well, if I’m your manager then I know what languages you speak.
I know where you’ve been before.
I know what you’re options are.
So if you are this person and I know Musaab, I don’t know hates a random country. (Romania.)
Let’s not go into names. But that was just an example.
And the only thing that I have in mind is, guess what? Oh, I throw you and your whole department, and I just have an awesome job for you in Romania.
I know you hate it, and you don’t speak the language but this is it, or you don’t need to stay with us.
And this is what you see often.We could talk at length about if you saw it coming.
She said she didn’t. Which, then I would say if she seriously didn’t, I think the company is even worse.
Yeah, I can imagine, and I have no evidence for what I’m talking about now.
I can imagine that there were signs and she didn’t want to see it.
Yeah, so as we all like to do the same things and we all feel safe and secure. So we don’t really see stuff coming. There’s a reason why we have some insurances.
Because people, if you wait for them to insure themselves… well it ain’t gonna happen.
So if she did, she did. Did she misinterpret or ignore the signs? Or were there no signs, whatever.
That’s not really the point for this one. But the point is that she has been fired, so not only her team has been fired. But what you wrote us is, she said she reframed it.
I have been given an opportunity in Spain.
We double check the opportunity in Spain. Was the opportunity in Spain or nothing? Yeah. So she got fired.
Well, we see this more and more often especially in bigger companies who don’t give a fart about the people who work there.
And we see this exactly in that way. So there is a probation period or grace period to fire the people. Companies use the last day, bring them all together and say, “By the way, we have no idea how to work without you. But we give this a try from next morning on, the next Monday on.
By the way, pack your stuff. Now the security’s escorting you out. We have already locked your accounts.”
Wow. So I have done this by myself in my last company when we have been given orders from above. Here is this person and this team.
We fired them. We need to make sure that at 11:05, you block all of their accounts now including the smartphones.
Yes, it must be in time exactly at 11:05. And the boss came and said, “Did you make need to make sure that we don’t mess this up? This is important.
12 accounts.” Wow.
I very, very often see a disconnect, especially with people who are, let’s say, older than 30.
They have some loyalty to their companies as they equal to me. We have learned this from our parents.
I know that my very very first job just before the study I was made an apprenticeship in a very small company. My dad said “That’s not a good choice.” Why is this not a good choice?
“This company, this is so small. Do you seriously think they will survive until you retire?”
There’s something expected that I just go there on an apprenticeship, and then I retire there 50 years later. This was how our parents worked. And I believe that we took this over.
And we’ve seen this as the pattern or something like that. So and then we see today, companies don’t give a damn about employees at all.
And this is the more true the bigger the company gets. I mean, you could read this in the newspapers every time.
Two big banks go together and they reduced their cost base. They kick out 10,000 people.
Listen, people are only a cost base, and I mean, read the fucking Internet pages.
“No our human capital is the most important.” Bullshit.
So the bigger the company gets, I believe the less loyalty they have towards you. And they have no loyalty to you when they are a publicly listed company.
Yeah, because the stockholders control it. Seriously, I’m not a communist, even if this sounds like it. I’m a true believer in capitalism.
But the thing about stocks is that stock owners are like mosquitoes.
They don’t give a fuck about the horse that they own. They only take care about the blood that they can suck out of it.
So a company that is owned by an anonymous bunch of stockholders is owned by enemies of the company.
Because these people are only interested in what comes out of this. They’re not interested in what they do.
They are not interested in the people. This is all. So bigger companies have from, what I see, no loyalty to people at all because people are only cost base.
If you work in a company with a reasonable size, and you can decide for yourself what is reasonable, with a reasonable ownership like there is this person who wants to shop, then a lot of these things that I’m saying now is maybe not applicable to you. But the big ones just have the most people working and big companies.
So going back to Nicole’s example.
This company came up, made the decision on the green table.
And they fired her only with the little exit clause of you can have your job in Spain.
And now that I’m thinking about it, I’m not even sure if this would be a job with the same conditions like in Germany. This would be a job like a team leader in Spain.
Nicole: I told you, screw them. Screw them.
Go on sick leave now. Do interviews like hell, and go to a new company. Play the “I don’t want to go.” Use the union or workers council, maybe even sue them.
Whatever. They peed in your pool, now is your time for revenge.
This is what I’m saying.
So I will just play the devil’s advocate here.
Some people would see that as maybe a positive thing. Like, “Well, they let my team go, but they gave me an opportunity to go abroad.
It’s a new culture, a different lifestyle. I already have a base there in terms of the company would help me.” So I know it’s a hard ultimatum.
You may have to leave your family and friends behind, but it also opens up an avenue towards furthering yourself. And we’ve spoken before about challenging yourself and being the best version of yourself. So what would you say to that?
I would completely agree to what you say. But, and the sentence starts with but, if there would be a choice perhaps. Choice means a minimum of two options.
One option is not a choice. That is an ultimatum. Eat or die is not really a choice.
So I’m completely with you. And I would be the first person to cheer for going to Spain. I mean Spain! We’re not talking about, I don’t know, north of Norway or something.
We talk about Spain. I mean, this is cool! We’re now reframing because Nicole said she doesn’t speak Spanish; if you have this tendency to Spain or for adventure or whatever, and then you take this as an opportunity. I love it! Go for it. I have no hints because, as I said, there is no choice involved.
It’s an eat or die situation.Yes, you can reframe this positively. Still, I believe this is company not worthy of my lifetime.
Then I’d even use them to pay me the move to Spain. In Spain, I quit and move to a new company in Spain.
So this is my point. I’m quite picky on this. Yeah, they give me money, I understand. But I give them a lifetime.
Screw money. You know, money comes and goes. When your lifetime goes, it’s done.
If you treat me like this, it ain’t gonna happen.
And again, this is what I see. So the message of today’s episode is: Don’t overstate your loyalty. And we will talk about how we make excuses in our own brains in a later episode.
That’s an interesting one because lots of people kind of understand this in the brain when I say don’t overstate this loyalty.
But then they overstate this loyalty with funny excuses, “So my company will die and my people…” That the trap that I see lots of good leaders fall into. A good leader is someone with empathy and they feel seriously responsible for their people and they don’t call them teams. They call them usually family. Or at least they call these people members.
When I then go there and tell them, “Guess what? You just go to run. I mean fast.
Can’t you see the newspaper?” Then they see and they know all of that. And then they even have more terrible, even worse stories from the inside.
Yeah, and they say, “No, I cannot leave my tribe behind.”
And this is what I’m saying. I love this attitude, But sorry to say, most of the companies are not worth that attitude.
Keep in mind. Your people are there voluntarily.
You cried tears last time this one person quit the job and you didn’t see it coming.
So they go as well. They can vote. They have their own income. They have their own families. No, they’re not dreaming of you.
So I understand this attitude. I love it. I believe this is the foundation of good leadership. Empathy is the foundation of good leadership.
If you hate people, you would never become a good leader.
This is the only thing worth where I say this is the part that I don’t know if you can learn empathy.
I don’t know. But throw this away, Throw it away now, it is still only the second family. This is not your born family. This is not the person you love. I hope that it’s not! This is only a job.
And this job is in an organization I love. When organizations take care of you and are loyal they are worth every damn hour that you work there. Love it. And this is the minority of stories that I hear. So this is this is my meaning where I’m saying be careful with loyalty. I see that loyalty from bigger companies gets worse and worse and worse. All right. Great. Thanks so much everyone. Bye.