August 1, 2020 at 10:40 pm #112448
A few years back I worked for a company that was acquiring a small “family” company of about 17 employees. We were a start up from a more metropolitan area and the company we purchased was in a smaller rural area. I remember walking in with our CEO and CFO both in expensive suits and noticing the office was more laid back in their appearance, casual clothing and modest decor. I recall their reactions being slightly negative as we were “big corporate” here to change their world. Having done this again, I would have added to our checklist to have an understanding of the office culture to determine if a more business casual approach with a simple collared shirt and pants would have been better.
What other “lessons learned” have others gathered over the years that aren’t necessarily something you would think of adding to a Day 1 Integration strategy?August 7, 2020 at 12:37 pm #112526
Gary A. Bufalo Jr., MBAParticipant
I feel it’s important in Day 1 to communicate not just “next steps” and talking about “the big corporate company”, but making it clear that they are looking forward to getting to know each of the new team members and what has made them successful so everyone can learn from each other. Setting the tone, that the buying company “doesn’t know all”, and is able and willing to learn and grow together is an important message to communicate quickly in the process.August 17, 2020 at 2:59 am #112724
– Transparency on Day 1 is very important. Be open about what you still don’t know and provide a clear short-term and future strategy as much as possible
– Try to simplify things as much as possible specially when acquiring a small company. Big corporate can seem very complicated with too many processes to small companies and the simpler you can make things the better
– Make sure to cover all cross functional activities including HR, Sales, Marketing, Technical integration, business development at high level and cover the high level vision and strategyAugust 20, 2020 at 1:52 am #112791
Hi Rochelle – One lesson learned would be for specific department staff to be on-site on Day 1. HR would be important to answer employees questions about benefits. IT would be important because that is a critical integration and that staff will be immediately working with the acquirer. Finally, I would include a Finance staff person. Among those three department representatives, that will help ease fears and answer the target staff’s questions. It will also start the relationship building process which is important for a successful integration.
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