Your employees are important to you. Corporate reorganizations, mergers and acquisitions affect employees, customers, suppliers and vendors. These mental worries remain in our minds and consume us. When executive teams fail to acknowledge change, it can be difficult for HR to align and engage employees. How you’re going to communicate with your team. Employees in one plant received the … Initial reading is to get a rough idea of what information is provided for the analyses. “Over communicate. And that is just one issue to worry about! Share on email. Keeping employees motivated through this period of change is one of the most important considerations. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate. Communicate Often. I Tweeted this morning to ask my network for advice about M&A comms. Create an FAQ process that allows people to ask questions & receive answers. Too often a company will focus on communicating a merger or acquisition to such external constituencies as the media and Wall Street analysts. 3. When managing projects such as mergers … Who should make the announcement, and what communication channels should they use? Would you like to work together? Recognise it matters to employees, so as well as being clear about the benefits, be honest about the challenges and the risk and the steps being taken to overcome them. The buyer was a public company and feared premature disclosure. Breaking the News How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Study Solution & Analysis. In six years AccentCare has doubled in size. Ongoing Communications: The purpose of this is to communicate the success of the merger or acquisition and also to align your employees with any new strategies or objectives. She writes: “A merger is really a disturbing experience for those involved, where we confront both real dangers (will I have a job?) At a large corporation, efficiency and operations depend on the support of thousands of individuals. Only after the news is out does management turn its attention inward, usually relying on the more traditional channels for informing employees. Post-Merger Integration Plan. Because affected employees will eventually see through the nonsense, and you can expect lost respect and lower productivity. Employees need clarity on facts and figures, to have opportunities to hear information first-hand and be able to ask questions and to feel part of the process. Communication should be constant and delivered in a variety of ways such as email, FAQs, meetings, a dedicated website, videos, conference calls, town hall meetings, etc. It's now been three months since we completed the merger to form (company name). The employees have not had months to evaluate and understand it nor do they have any indication of what the merger will mean to them personally. Corporate reorganizations, mergers and acquisitions affect employees, customers, suppliers and vendors. 2. Suggested Citation, P.O. During the complex process of bringing the two sets of employees together, continuous effort is crucial for keeping in touch with how people feel; communicating information … I hope this email is a demonstration of my commitment to continue to improve in this area. “Be absolutely honest all the way. the role of senior managers in a merger situation, How to communicate mergers and acquisitions. I’ve included their thoughts below on their top tips, plus worst mistakes you could make in this situation. Too often a company will focus on communicating a merger or acquisition to such external constituencies as the media and Wall Street analysts. Reiterate the honest, straightforward WHY in everything” – Cheryl Martin, independent marketing communications advisor, @cmmbiz. Some companies extend equity to founding employees, so the future of the company matters even more … Keywords: Acquisitions, communication, employees, mergers, success. Keep the flow of information going. 2. Communication during a merger or acquisition isn’t only about keeping people informed—it’s also about keeping performance high when a company and its employees are in vulnerable positions. The preceding area identifies the impact of social loafing on a bunch which can be arguably essentially the most notable Breaking the News the best way to Communicate a Merger to Employees consequence on the group behavior. HOW TO COMMUNICATE A MERGER TO EMPLOYEES The 1990s could be described as the “decade of consolidation,” when some of the world’s largest corporations merged. In a startup, the people on the ground have helped build a successful brand from nothing. even so, social loafing also has an effect on the people today that comprise the team. There’s a variety of ways I can support you including training, consultancy and mentoring to boost your skills and confidence. Case studies – Using employee feedback surveys post-acquisition You are dealing with emotions and uncertainty and need to get organised. The multiple demands of planning our future strategy, running the business on a day-to-day basis, and dealing with the demands of the merger have interfered with more frequent communications. A recent survey of managers conducted by the Darden Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Virginia has explored these questions about the practices that companies use to communicate internally during their firm's merger or acquisition. Initially, fast reading without taking notes and underlines should be done. The Fearful employees might try to undermine the deal by giving the buyer a negative impression. A 2015 report from Harvard Business Review found that between 70 per cent and 90 […] Mergers and acquisitions often create winners and losers at both the corporate and individual staff levels. 08383648Permission needed to reproduce content. 2. Mergers are one of the biggest changes an organization can undergo. This page was processed by aws-apollo4 in, http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/bourgeois.htm, http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/west.htm. Kate Davies, CEO of Notting Hill Genesis has been writing on her personal blog about the experience over the past few weeks. Successful Organizations underscore the need for effective communications “The perseverance to … A recent survey of managers conducted by the Darden Graduate School of Business explored communication practices that companies use to communicate internally during their firms' merger or acquisition. Clarity about the motives and intentions, as well as the d I’m proud to have been invited to work with, and advise, some of the world’s leading brands. Since most mergers and acquisitions fail, this ongoing communication to keep your new band of employees aligned and working towards one goal will greatly improve your chances of success. Share positive company announcements, like a new product in development or a glowing customer review. 1. Make the merger announcement on new company letterhead or on stationary or an email template that contains both existing company logos. Communication during mergers and acquisitions is critical. Being in touch with and understanding our own feelings is a start. INTRODUCTION Weston et al (1998) believe that mergers and acquisitions (M&As) and industrial restructuring activities have raised important issues both for business decisions and for public policy formulation. What communication channels should be used? Communicate Often and Through Several Channels. Ensure line managers have an FAQ on hand for follow-up questions. Communicating merger to employees open and honestly is the most important thing that you can do. how to communicate a merger to employees The 1990s could be described as the “decade of consolidation,” when some of the world's largest corporations merged. The communications workstream springs into action very early in the merger process, and the pace rarely lets up much. Are there unexpected changes in the sector or the economy as a … All Things IC Hub address:Saunders House, 52-53 The Mall, Ealing, W5 3TA. Communicating a Merger : The Emirates NBD Story 1. Integrating cultures, values, expectations and staff is a big challenge for management – and for employee communication. Good employees might get nervous and leave, reducing the acquisition value. Further reading on the All Things IC blog: If you are responsible for M&A comms, you need to get organised. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this article. An effective, proactive communication plan is therefore critical to ensure that employees understand the process and the timeline until the company can reveal the decisions it has made. And who should make the announcement? Major HBR cases concerns on a whole industry, a whole organization or some part of organization; profitable or non-profitable organizations. So, it … Emirates NBD Communicating a Merger : The Emirates NBD Story Sanjay Uppal Group Chief Financial Officer Emirates NBD GCC Corporate Finance Conference Capital Markets in Turbulent Times 16 – 17 April 2008 Park Hyatt, Dubai 2. After a merger, HR leaders are often tasked with developing an internal communication strategy. Invite questions. If you wish to purchase the right to make copies of this paper for distribution to others, please select the quantity. Share on linkedin. Thank you to the professional communicators who have shared their thoughts as part of my blog’s #ICVoices series. Communication should be constant and delivered in a variety of ways such as email, FAQs, meetings, a dedicated website, videos, conference calls, town hall meetings, etc. This is a serious case of change comms. Employees throughout the company can be pulled in on an as-needed basis but are otherwise free to focus on providing exceptional customer service. “The focus on industry/market/investor communications and a lack of engagement and focus regarding employee comms. You have collected up some really valuable views and advice here. It’s business as usual” – Cheryl Martin, independent marketing communications advisor, @cmmbiz. Share on twitter. What and When to Tell Employees about a Merger or Acquisition. Here are five tips that business leaders can use to manage communication and performance through a merger or acquisition: Strategize. A leader at one of the organizations was exceptionally good at communicating how individual employees would benefit from the merger. Do you have a query for me? If you are downsizing, then you know the anxiety it produces among employees and the way it impacts morale, productivity, and customers. The objectives of this email are to update you on how the integration of the two businesses is progressing, to explain what integration challenges lie ahead, and to highlight how you can continue to help the company deliver on its potential. Clients say working with me leaves them feeling inspired, motivated, full of ideas and ready to turn plans into action. Employees are the key to a successful merger. Darden Case No. Listen to why Lindsay’s first duty is to understand the new audience, and what a good communications blend that drives business results and motivates employees looks like. You need a log-in to access it. “I don’t know, yet” is an okay answer once you close the loop down the road. Stay Focused . One employee outweighs another. I help practitioners around the globe increase their knowledge of internal communication. Before long, however, as systems and processes are overhauled, those employees realize they have been fed a “party line.” Leaders lose credibility and productivity slows. In contrast, merger consultants Clement and Greenspan stated: “Devising employee communications in M&A situations requires a tremendous level of strategic forethought and skillful execution.” An essential task facing a merged organization's management is the development of timely, honest, and detailed internal communications in the days and weeks immediately following a merger announcement and the eventual closing of the deal. 1. Learn principles that can help guide merger communication strategies and ways to facilitate leadership visibility in driving merger integration goals. Your employees are important to you. The letter should come from the new top manager of the merged organization or be written as a jointly-issued communication from the CEOs of the merging companies. But when is the right time to tell employees about a pending merger? I imagine his message is along the lines of “this is what it means for us/you” at Asda. Use the timeline to help people understand when the questions you don’t have answers for will be answered” – Elisabeth Wang, Executive Director, PR and Communications, @elisabeth_wang. One of 2018’s biggest business news stories was the proposed merger of SSE Energy Services with npower, to create a new, independent energy supplier with around 11 million customers for listing on the London Stock Exchange by Q1 2019 here in the UK. However, communication skills are one of the hardest ones to learn. The mere mention of the term "merger and acquisition" (M&A) can send messages of misinformation or half-truths. Thanks for the shout out Rachel! If you … Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Solution,Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Analysis, Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Study Solution, The mere mention of the term "M & A» (M & A) can send messages to misinformation or half-truths. Here are 4 Ways to Prepare Your Employees for a Merger or Acquisition: 1. Reassure them” – Paul Cawley, Communications & Engagement Officer, @paul_cawley. Harness a Proven Methodology to Keep Employees Engaged. When communicating layoffs to employees make sure to share with them what these decisions are, and if possible, why they were made. How to Communicate with Employees During Mergers and Acquisitions. They collectively have 330,000 employees across 2,800 stores and £51bn revenue. Effective communication during the post-merger phase is required to: ensure a common understanding of the business case for the merger and the vision for the future; help people understand and internalize change; keep the organization focused on customers and productivity; reinforce desired behaviors; promote cultural alignment; Your employees are human beings too and you need to treat them that way too. Communicating the shared vision and goal of the transaction will help employees and other stakeholders to understand and accept the deal. One culture unseats another. The key when pulsing during a merger or acquisition is to make employee voices a critical part of the change. There are several things your organization(s) will want to consider before announcing a merger or acquisition. Colleagues will have uncertainty. “Not being clear on the real timescale for reviewing resources in each part of the business” – Andrew Martin, Senior HR Consultant @AskAndrewMartin. The merger and acquisition process can immediately impact the stress levels of employees involved. Analyze current roles and responsibilities, and create a tentative plan. The mere mention of the term “merger” or “acquisition” (M&A) … The first part of your letter should be the announcement of the merger/acquisition. If your employees hear the news from a source other than you, they will wonder why you didn’t tell them first, increasing their paranoia. In the worst-case scenario, employees hear the news from neighbors, friends, or clients or read about it in the newspapers. What’s the best way to communicate mergers and acquisitions? Sample merger and acquisition letter to employees. If you disregard that then you lose trust and respect from day one” – Lynda Thwaite, Head of Marketing and Communications, @LyndaTLive. In a startup, the people on the ground have helped build a successful brand from nothing. This month a major merger was completed when two organisations, each made up of around 1500 people, managing about 65,000 homes between them, amalgamated into a £750m turn over organisation. Before long, however, as systems and processes are overhauled, those employees realize they have been fed a “party line.”. Over-communicate. you can find several Negative effects that individuals might experience. Bourgeois, L. Jay and Yemen, Gerry and West, June A., Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees. Much better for the leadership to encourage the anxieties of the managers to emerge.”. Remember that your employees will want to know more than the details of the merger. Typically the senior management is accountable for breaking the news, but most of the questions are going to be asked to team leaders as the employees are most likely to feel comfortable to ask them. Clarity about the motives and inte The basic problem is that companies often can’t announce these changes early in the merger-planning effort. Size: 241K. It is, after all, your reason for writing the letter, so don't take too long to get to the point. We collect, use and protect your data in line with our privacy policy. The 1990s could be described as the “decade of consolidation,” when some of the world's largest corporations merged. It only serves to erode trust” – Elisabeth Wang, Executive Director, PR and Communications, @elisabeth_wang. Employees need clarity on facts and figures, to have opportunities to hear information first-hand and be able to ask questions and to feel part of the process. 1. How to communicate with employees through a merger. To: All Employees From: Senior VP . At a large corporation, efficiency and operations depend on the support of thousands of individuals. Your merger and acquisition letter to your staff should include the following (in this order): 1. Many mergers need to be approved by local governments, attorneys … The 1990s could be described as the decade of the consolidation as some of the world’s largest corporations merged. COMMUNICATION WITH EMPLOYEES FOLLOWING A MERGER: A LONGITUDINAL FIELD EXPERIMENT DAVID M. SCHWEIGER University of South Carolina ANGELO S. DENISI Rutgers University This study examined the impact of a realistic merger preview, a pro-gram of realistic communications, on employees of an organization that had just announced a merger. When leaders feel they have said enough, employees still want more. Be considerate” – Lynda Thwaite, Head of Marketing and Communications, @LyndaTLive. “Respect both companies’ brands and history. Gallup discovered a gap between how employees and leaders view communication. I recommend her post on the role of senior managers in a merger situation. Communication is the key to organisational success and nowhere is this truism more apparent than in the influence of internal communication during a transformational process as dramatic as a merger or acquisition. From what I can see, they’re taking a joined-up approach to internal communication, which is smart, particularly having the message from the three CEOs, plus one from Roger. When they make the announcement to employees, it is, literally, a done deal. Communicate honestly. In a startup, the people on the ground have helped build a successful brand from nothing. It is said that case should be read two times. While at the time most headlines focused on the economic effect of the mergers, some observers noted the internal impact on the companies involved. Clarity about motives and intent, as well as timing the release of information during a merger, requires strategic information management. The mere mention of the term "merger and acquisition" (M&A) can send messages of misinformation or half-truths. “Plan but be agile, as nothing stands still. Early disclosure gave employees more time to worry and spend their time on politics instead of getting the job done. This was enhanced by using a group of independent . In every merger, confusion, uncertainty, fear and resistance amongst … Share on facebook. and mental anxieties (feelings of disorientation and loss, for example). In the past six years, AccentCare has doubled in size organically, and through a lot of acquisitions, going from about 12,000 employees to 25,000 employees. Please do keep blogging your thoughts, I’ve enjoyed reading your articles. Your employees are important to you. The long term success of the merged company depends on the communication strategy to communicate with employees. We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email safe. Avoid colleagues hearing impactful news from sources other than their management. While at the time most headlines focused on the economic effect of the mergers, some observers noted the internal impact on the companies involved. 2. Is customer demand lower than expected? Make the announcement to all of your employees at once, before you inform the media, vendors, suppliers or other parties. Communicate the shared vision. Or visit my shop to see everything I offer. Communication is the key to organisational success and nowhere is this truism more apparent than in the influence of internal communication during a transformational process as dramatic as a merger or acquisition. Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Solution,Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Analysis, Breaking the News: How to Communicate a Merger to Employees Case Study Solution, The mere mention of the term "M & A» (M & A) can send messages to misinformation or half-truths. “Lack of transparency – delaying tough answers doesn’t help you. First published on the All Things IC blog 30 April 2018. Keywords: mergers and acquisitions, communication process, communication strategy, Suggested Citation: © 2021 All Things IC LtdCompany registered in England No. A leader at one of the organizations was exceptionally good at communicating how individual employees would benefit from the merger. Strategies for a Smooth Merger 1. In most courses studied at Harvard Business schools, students are provided with a case study. To combat rumors and twisted facts, create a solid communications plan for your employees, leadership and other key stakeholders, such as customers and board members. Layoffs are usually part of larger business decisions, such as mergers, acquisitions, or strategy changes. “Not thinking of the risks and researching and planning for them” – Laura Sutherland, Founder and Director @laurafromaura. Provide employees with the tools they need to do their jobs, from cell phones and laptops to key company information. Clarity about the motives and intentions, as well as the d “As well as issuing FAQ’s etc, ask people what three questions they most want answered; provide an honest open face-to-face contact – not a corporate messenger but someone who will address the elephant in the room as best they can; promote the positives in a warm inspiring way – where are the synergies, why should Joe Bloggs want to be part of that?” – Andrew Martin, Senior HR Consultant @AskAndrewMartin. Darden A Case charges $6.25 . This is a serious case of change comms. The disclosure to the outside world that a company is for sale — in other words, a candidate for a merger or an acquisition — can be a devastating bit of news. Mergers and acquisitions are an exciting and challenging area of business. I really enjoyed this post. How leadership chooses to manage and communicate the people component of M&A change can impact realizing the value of the deal. To ensure a smooth transition during a merger or acquisition, it’s important to communicate with employees at every stage—from announcement through integration. merger of Asda and Sainsbury’s supermarkets, Sainsbury’s employees share Little Stories, How Asda is building a diverse and inclusive culture. Here's what a good communications strategy that drives business results and motivates employees looks like. 3. I am not the only one who has lost sleep. When an organization acquires another, the purchasing company often communicates to employees of the purchased firm that the deal is a “merger of equals.” Unless this is the truth, don’t say that. 1. If there’s sensitive information holding back detail say so. An effective, proactive communication plan is therefore critical to ensure that employees understand the process and the timeline until the company can reveal the decisions it has made. The mere mention of the term “merger” or “acquisition” (M&A) often sent ripples of misinformation or half-truths throughout a company and had enormous negative implications for the merger integration process. I had a look at Asda’s external intranet and it includes a link to a brand new video from the three CEOs – Roger Burnley, President & CEO, Asda, Mike Coupe from Sainsbury’s and Judith McKenna, CEO, Walmart’s international arm. A common pitfall is for the acquirer to communicate to employees early in the deal that they intend a “merger of equals” so as not to upset employees in the acquired organization. If anyone from Asda or Sainsbury’s would like to share what they’re doing internally with readers of my blog (I know you’re busy right now! Going off the last tip to boost employee morale, be sure to communicate! It is important to spend time reviewing all of these considerations before announcing because of the importance of your transaction being successful in the long term.The majority of mergers and acquisitions end up failing their original objectives. But when is the right time to tell employees about a pending merger? Identify the main milestones and trigger events. Merger & Acquisitions (M&As) are a valuable growth strategy for businesses looking to expand and acquire new capabilities. We use cookies to help provide and enhance our service and tailor content.By continuing, you agree to the use of cookies. By listening to employees, communicating effectively, and doubling down on its unique culture and programs, LinkedIn was able to thrive, even during its acquisition. Hot on the heels of the proposed merger of Asda and Sainsbury’s supermarkets, I thought I’d collate some advice and guidance to help you learn more about the topic. What’s the worst mistake you could make? ), the offer remains open. Don’t wait for info/detail to communicate. The mere mention of the term "merger and acquisition" (M&A) can send messages of misinformation or half-truths. Box 6550Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550United States434-924 -4833 (Phone), HOME PAGE: http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/bourgeois.htm, P.O. Merger changes things more fundamentally than most of us have ever experienced before at work. Some decisions will be timed so market hears first but, initiate comms to your employees at the same time. They recommend a multiphase approach that begins as soon as the transaction is announced and carries over into the weeks and months thereafter. Communication during mergers and acquisitions is critical. While at the time most headlines focused on the economic effect of the mergers, some observers noted the internal impact on the companies involved. A merger is a radical change which is already affecting everyone in both organisations, even if for many of them nothing is actually changing in terms of jobs or terms of employment. Management must be clear about motives and intent as well as attentive to the timing of the release of information during a merger, but a company requires strategic management of communications both internally and externally. If they don’t get enough solid information about the company’s future direction and where they fit into it, they are more likely to clock out – literally and figuratively. Merger Excellence will be achieved. To learn more, visit our Cookies page. This page was processed by aws-apollo4 in 0.127 seconds, Using these links will ensure access to this page indefinitely. What works well? Enrol today >. You also need a log-in to Sainsbury’s site. I’ve got lots of advice to share with you today including views from professional communicators in my network and a first-hand account from a CEO who has just been through a merger. During a merger, it’s important to share with employees up-to-date information about business decisions that are being made, even if all the details haven’t been nailed down. Communication during these times is a powerful tool that can help keep your employees engaged during difficult times. Create a timeline with milestones that can be updated and referred back to. Budget-cuts? How to communicate a merger. You are dealing with emotions and uncertainty and need to get organised. Power struggles prevail. According to the BBC today, Sainsbury’s CEO Mike Coupe has said Sainsbury’s and Asda will remain separate brands and no stores will close. Kickstart the comms as soon as you can. No firm is regarded safe from a takeover possibility. UVA-BC-0180, Available at SSRN: If you need immediate assistance, call 877-SSRNHelp (877 777 6435) in the United States, or +1 212 448 2500 outside of the United States, 8:30AM to 6:00PM U.S. Eastern, Monday - Friday. In no particular order (they’re all important!)…. The 1990s could be described as the “decade of consolidation,” when some of the world's largest corporations merged. Only after the news is out does management turn its attention inward, usually relying on the more traditional channels for informing employees. Thanks for your insight. However, … Required fields are marked *. All our profound emotions that are contained within our original organisational structure are released, and can result in ourselves or our people descending into panic – Who is in charge, will my manager change, will I have to work from somewhere else?”. The audience for a company merger or acquisition announcement video is primarily employees but also stock holders, customers, vendors and the overall market. You often don’t have a lot of time to prepare.

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