It's no secret that loyal employees are the driving force behind solid, stable, and profitable companies, whereas unhappy, disgruntled, and disloyal employees can quickly bring any company to its knees.

Loyal employees typically produce higher-quality products and services, leaving customers happier and more willing to do business with a company in the future.

Sales and marketing executives are the window to customers and traditionally play a huge role in building a company's brand. Meanwhile, employee loyalty builds customer loyalty, which builds brand loyalty. It's as simple as that. And loyal sales executives are happy to offer the services of a company they believe in—and that plays an integral role in corporate profitability.

Companies that lack such employee commitment can change their culture and build loyalty from the inside out by following these eight steps:

1. Clearly define the purpose and values of the company, and share them with everyone

The purpose of any company is why it exists—the defining reason the organization was created beyond making a profit. The values of a company are akin to its ethics, the standards by which it operates, and its expectations for how its employees will conduct business.

In a successful company, employees feel connected and committed to the company's purpose and values. Employees want to know that the company's purpose is to make the very best product or service for the price. If employees do not believe their product or service is making an honorable, real, and valued difference, they will not stay with the company.

At JetBlue Airways, everyone is known as a crewmember. Hiring is based on attitude and a shared value system that consists of safety, caring, integrity, fun, and passion. Moreover, the company operates under five principles of leadership, which include treating people right, inspiring greatness, and communicating consistently.

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Dianne Durkin is president of Loyalty Factor (, a training and consulting firm, and author of The Loyalty Advantage: Essential Steps to Energize Your Company, Your Customers, Your Brand. Contact Dianne at (603) 334-3401.