I read an interesting article about involving employees during merger & acquisition – a report by Gallup.
One of the key issues that employees talk during merger or acquisition is “Will I be ok post the M&A?”. For those who are actively involved in the M&A process this may not be a worry, but for most of the employees it can be an issue.
In India employees don’t speak up that easily, I have made it a point to be as communicative as I can.
Types of Employees
- Engaged employees work with passion and feel a profound connection to their company. They drive innovation and move the organization forward.
- Not-engaged employees are essentially “checked out”. They’re sleepwalking through their workday, putting time — but not energy or passion – into their work.
- Actively disengaged employees aren’t just unhappy at work, they’re busy acting out their unhappiness. Every day, these workers undermine what their engaged coworkers accomplish.
Engaging Employees During M&A
- Business leaders who are considering a merger or acquisition would be wise to consider the employee engagement levels in their target companies.
- According to Gallup research, in 2009, 28% of American workers were engaged, 54% were not engaged, and 18% were actively disengaged.
- If the engagement levels of the employees in the target company are high, that company could bring benefits in enhanced earnings.
- Among the employees whose companies had been acquired, 27% were engaged prior to the acquisition, but 30% were engaged following it, and the percentage of workers who were actively disengaged increased from 22% to 24%.
- A similar pattern was observed in employees whose companies were on the purchasing side of the equation: 27% were engaged prior to their companies’ purchase of another organization, and 29% were engaged following it.
- Company’s with a culture of engagement and a culture of collaboration are best suited for M&A
- Endeavours are most successful when the people involved can create productive relationships.
- The most important of those relationships in an M&A is trust.
- Leaders create an environment of trust by being as transparent as possible. When leaders communicate everything they can about their competitive environment, their long-term strategies, and what employees can expect, they show they can be trusted.
If you don’t engage the key employees their insecurity can prove to be expensive. You need to share what is just necessary, else you will be busy handling all the rumour mills. During M&A (or fundraise) process at times you get to see the true colours of the team. If you identify a rogue employee, fire immediately irrespective of how senior or important he or she is.