Ways to keep people engaged after integration

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  • #58952

    Hi there,
    how to keep people engaged for the “long run” after integration?
    Stock options and generous variable compensation are perhaps a way for executives and directors, what about the majority of the team?
    Here are 3 initiatives that I found useful:
    – Innovation contest. Allow everyone to share their ideas on how to innovate company products / services and rewards the top 3.
    – Functional town hall meetings. Some representatives of the board, together with the function leader, meet all the people from one function (ex. Finance, Customer Service) and take questions
    – Talent management | Career Progression Plans. They need to be defined and followed up

    What do you think ?
    What else works?


    Greg Jessup

    Along the lines of talent management our company offers a Manager In Training program and a Talent From Within program. I have found that if we can identify those high potential employees early on and bring them into the training programs it sets the tone across the newco. Not only do the individuals benefit from newfound opportunity, the other employees see it and this speaks volumes.


    I think, communication is the first step and there are ways to keep workforce and managers engaged through positive communication about new change. There can be usual townhalls, focus groups, idea contests and work force exchange programs etc.

    Woon Pheng Ong

    Ensure alignment to the merged entity mission and vision. Once the purpose of the organization and its people are aligned, individuals will naturally be engaged. Perhaps what may help is to define peoples roles and responsibilities clearly, and reward them on clearly defined KPIs.

    Jeff Christiansen

    Ultimately people need to feel like they have a better future with the new Co than elsewhere. I’d focus less on “immediate” moves to engage employees and more on what the new Co can do 1 year + to make employees want to stay.

    caroline dussault

    Besides the fact that they need to be integrated in the existing programs and have change management initiatives to support the merger, I have come to notice that, some of what we see as the smaller actions have an impact. For instance, to rapidly stop refering to the group as ’employees from X’ has quite an impact. For the buyer, the team as been in the project for many weeks to many months, we are so used to refering to them using the project name and/or the target’s name and it is a behavior that needs to change right away to not have the Us VS Them situations when merging the teams.

    David Widmer

    In the end, people will ask themselves “what’s in it for me”. Good communciation on the ongoing integration process must include potential answer(s) to this question.

    Lindsey LeClair

    Autonomy and working relationships that are based on mutual trust and respect.

    Alison Wills

    Communication is key to keeping people engaged after integration. Townhalls with regular updates on how the acquisition is performing post integration is a good tool.

    Boon Hean Lee

    Communication is definitely key in keeping people engaged post-integration but it would be great if we could take a step further to understand the employee’s concerns, and put a proper plan in place for handling cultural integration.

    Jeff Christiansen

    I have found these to be effective: 1). closer communication with managers about what the future could look like; 2) more regular team-building events; 3) regular communication from the PMO about how the integration is going and what behaviors raise the odds of success for each employee staying on board.

    Camille Louhichi

    Honest and credible sharing of information periodically after an integration is important to keep employees interested. I think it would be important to place KPIs for the merged company and for each employees to meet due to the successful integration to make sure they keep growing and create value. This can also be done with incentives like promotion paths, more training opportunities, potential for secondment abroad etc. More opportunities within the firm can help employees feel it was for the benefit fo all this M&A.

    Ryan Dawkins

    People have to believe they are adding value and play an important role in their new company which is the same as the people that were already with you. A tactical activity we do is establish an ambassador for location, typically geographic, who is responsible for maintaining communication and engagement with larger enterprise and gauging how people in their area handling the change.

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