Learning from LeBron
No matter what, how, or why LeBron did what he did. One thing is for sure- any loyalty that may have existed between LeBron and and the Cav’s is gone, and any relationship that may have existed between Gilbert and LeBron is also gone.
So, was it worth it for LeBron? For Gilbert? Who knows? And only time will tell.
The takeaway from all of this is that loyalty is good business. From Gilbert’s perspective, had he fostered a deep loyalty in LeBron, it’s more likely LeBron would still be with the Cav’s. And, if LeBron had fostered loyalty and relationships with the team and Gilbert he would be more marketable, and he may have left without burning the bridges so many fans were standing on.
Loyalty exists when expectations are exceeded, period. What we can learn from LeBron is at the end of the day- relationships, loyalty, and expectations is the basis for decisions made in business. Sure money is an issue, contracts, and price all get into the game. But relationships, expectations, and loyalty trump every time sooner or later.
Obviously, LeBron’s expecations either grew or were never met with the Cav’s (he took a pay cut to go to the Heat.) Gilbert’s expectations either grew or were never met with LeBron (LeBron accomplished nothing towards a championship). This causes a relationship breakdown and loyalty comes apart at the seams.
Is your business exceeding expectations? Are you creating loyalty and relationships among your internal and external customers? Do you even know?
In your personal life it’s the same way. Marriage? Friendships? Work life and piers? Are you exceeding expectations?
Our challenge is not in how, what, or why other people do what they do. Rather, our challenge is where we set the bar in our own life, and how high we are willing to jump to create loyalty and relationships that will eventually trump everything else… sooner or later.