Paul Lambert has hailed Randy Lerner as the best chairman he's worked under.
Lambert was appointed by Lerner in June 2012 and is now the sixth longest-serving manager in the Barclays Premier League - and the 27th in England as a whole.
Lambert praised Robbie Cowling, his former boss at Colchester.
But the 44-year-old picked out Lerner as No.1 due - in great part - to his understanding during the tough festive season one year ago.
Lambert said Lerner not only appreciated the pain of defeat after defeat after defeat but also the magnitude of the long haul job facing him.
He said: "It's easy to sit here and say your chairman is really good because you think that will keep you in the job one week later.
"But I get on really well with him.
"He took over in 2006. The stadium is fantastic. Look at the training ground too.
"He has plummeted one heck of a lot of money into the club - on and off the pitch. There has to be that respect. He's been great to work with too.
"When I came in, he told me it would be my hardest year in management. He was right. He was totally right. If you come through that, you come through most things.
"He knew the magnitude of it, on and off the field.
"It's not a challenge I will run away from. This job is years - not just one or two. He knew it would be a major haul.
"I remember when he rang me after the Chelsea game. He said 'how are you?' He phones me after every match. We speak regularly.
"I don't think I could have got away with 'we were unlucky.' But he tells you how it is. If you're that successful in business, you don't tread on eggshells.
"No-one was happy about losing. But there was the human side of him, that's his way. He knew what we were going through.
"He watches everything, every game.
"He's a good guy - the best chairman I've worked with, no doubt, definitely. Robbie Cowling was good. But Randy is probably the best."
Of course, this past week has seen the departure of bosses Andres Villas-Boas and Steve Clarke from Tottenham and West Brom respectively.
Lambert thinks time is not a friendly quality for managers these days.
He added: "It's unforgiving. You used to get a few games to turn it around, now it's one or two matches!
"They say 'get him out, we will get someone else.'
"Then the same problems keep starting. Money starts turning over and over. How do you stabilise it?
"It's incredible. It's impossible. It can't keep going the way it's going.
"Look at the amount of managers that have lost their jobs, it's incredible. It really is. It's incredible the football world.
"You get no respite. You used to get a right few games before pressure now you only have virtually one game. It's ridiculous. It's not right."
Snap up match tickets for Villa v Crystal Palace.