Communicate Clearly During a Merger or Acquisition to Help Manage Rumors
A conversation overheard at the water bottle filling station in the company break room:
Employee 1: I hear our company’s being sold! Do you think we’ll have still have jobs?
Employee 2: I sure hope so, but what if our pay and benefits are cut?
Employee 1: Former employees’ online reviews of the new company are mixed.
Employee 2: Maybe it’s time to start looking for something new.
Rumors and conversations like this among employees can quickly spiral out of control when change is happening in an organization. If your business is looking to acquire or merge with another one, you have plenty of communicating to do. Consider employing these merger and acquisition communications best practices.
Be clear and upfront when explaining what is being planned and when it is expected to happen. Put news in terms of what matters most to employees – what will happen to their jobs and pay. When company leaders and supervisors communicate honestly and respectfully, most employees will get on board with changes that are coming.
Create a regular cadence of communications and stick to it, even if you don’t believe there is anything new to share. Employees want to hear from you and will be reassured that executives continue to communicate.
Find out what is on your employees’ minds. Encourage them to talk with their HR representative or supervisor and share their questions and concerns. Then, address those fully in your communications – an FAQ document is a simple way to do this.
Managers and supervisors can be big allies, so give them advance information and ask their opinions about what, when, and how to communicate with employees.
They will certainly have questions about what will change and how it will affect them and their businesses.
At Latitude 34 PR, we have successfully shepherded clients through all aspects of communications that are essential before, during, and after mergers and acquisitions. If you’re looking to put together a communication strategy and messaging to help you manage the transition, contact us today. Put our expertise to work for you before the rumors get out of control.