Are employers loyal, and should employees be loyal to them?

I'm doing a cynicism check.

My experience is broadly that employers - esp. investment banks - are deeply disloyal.

And I'm not sure they really deserve much loyalty from employees.

Now, I get that in a downturn, companies need to cut costs to stay afloat, and hey, that's just business.

What I'm talking about is the fairly arbitrary duche-baggery that I'm talking about.

Examples:

  • friend of mine was an ED at a bulge bracket in TMT, and worked for them for years making a lot of money for the bank during the big Asia telecom boom. The BB decided TMT was slowing down, and so they wanted to focus more on power/O&G. So they fired the whole TMT group, and that same day put out adverts for hiring power/O&G bankers. As an ED, he wasn't a deal-generator, he was execution. It would have taken him and his colleagues a few days to figure out how the industry dynamics work and how to model power deals. Doesn't seem necessary to cut the whole team that had been making you money during the bull run. Punchline is the BB then realized they still needed a TMT team and a year later tried hiring the guys back and hired others to help in rebuilding the team.
  • big regional name decided they wanted to enter the Hong Kong market. They hired hundreds of bankers, paying top salaries and guaranteed bonuses. 12 months later, realized their business wasn't really taking off. Fired everyone and shut the whole shop.
  • ranked all the associates in training and cut the bottom 1/4 of the class right after training

Comments (9)

Aug 10, 2019

No and no.

Let me caveat this: I have worked with a top team before and was deeply loyal to them. They were to me. I found their mentorship invaluable. I decided to move on after a few years to focus on my directly applicable experience. I still update them on my life and check in with them.

But to a firm cutting people instantly or demanding over the top hours/ output/ face time with no pay/ title bump in sight- no and no.

Aug 10, 2019

No and no

Aug 10, 2019

The only company worth staying at is where you have real equity upside. Everything else = wage slave. Phat big booty exits pl0x

Aug 10, 2019

Based comment

Aug 10, 2019

Confirmed - this thread looks identical from the business owner's perspective, that employees are not loyal and should not be trusted (I don't feel this way, but I know business owners who do).

Comp is great, but equity is king.

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Aug 10, 2019

I don't consider myself a mercenary, but loyalty to a company is ill-advised. Loyalty to individuals can be argued for though. Don't sacrifice for a company. The company will be making no sacrifices for you.

Aug 10, 2019

so what's the right balance?

What does it mean we should do if there's no loyalty or security?

Start our own thing?

Do the minimum to not get fired?

Aug 10, 2019

In my opinion:

A) See a path where you get equity upside (partnership)

B) Start and do your own thing

Aug 11, 2019
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