Everyone knows that The Beatles broke up because of Yoko Ono, right? Well, like every relationship, it’s more complicated than one factor bringing down the whole house.
One of the biggest issues the Beatles had from the first time they recorded an album together was fighting over which songs would make it to the album. This is very significant because whoever is listed with a songwriting credit on a song that becomes a hit gets not only the accolades, but some or all of the publishing money, which comes from how often a song is played on the radio or licensed for commercial use.
Lennon and McCartney would often compose one song per album for Starr to sing, and let Harrison either cover an old standard, or record one of his own compositions. …Though Harrison emerged as a proficient songwriter and producer, he nonetheless continued to have his song ideas for the most part rejected. He became frustrated and this led to estrangement from the rest of the group.
Band members who do not receive money from publishing have to rely on an advance from the record label that is essentially a loan against the future costs of recording, marketing, PR, and other costs of doing business which the band has little say over. Beyond this, band members live off of a cut of the profits from touring and selling merchandise for income.
Since publishing royalties can be the best opportunity for earning income, watching one or two members live large from this income while you struggle financially can breed discontent and feelings of not being appreciated.
The Band and The Eagles are two examples of countless bands like The Beatles that couldn’t overcome fights over royalties. R.E.M and Depeche Mode are examples of bands that learned from The Beatles’ mistake. They give every band member a songwriting credit on every song on every album. Even though only one or two members may have written some songs, it took all of the members to add their creative input, musical talent, and execution to produce each song.
All businesses, like bands, are made up of a collective of individuals. Though some may contribute in larger ways than others, no one person is responsible for the company’s success. It’s important to share accolades, credit, and profits with the core group members that drive the business forward.
Lack of appreciation is one of the largest reasons that personal and business relationships fail. Employees and business partners need to feel that they are valued, just like everyone else in your life. Beyond treating them with respect, giving them credit publicly for wins they achieve for the company, increasing their pay, and promoting them to a bigger title, remember to challenge them, make them feel needed, and support the full team in working as a solid positive unit.
Even if you’re as talented as Lennon or McCartney, it takes the talent of your full team to make hits with lasting impact.
This article first appeared on Huffington Post.