Project #48670 - HR Mgmt: Communication—A Key Element of Mergers and Acquisitions

E-mails, PowerPoint presentations, online discussion forums, town hall meetings, teleconferences, training, flyers, and one-on-one discussions are all various tools that can be used to communicate employee value before, during, and after an M&A. With all of this at an organization’s disposal, why do so many M&As experience communication failures? HR and top management should always make communication with valued employees their top priority. In addition, communication within the organization as a whole helps to eliminate employee fears, speculation, and rumors. Chapter 2 of the course text states, “people rarely leave companies—they leave managers and dead-end jobs” (Bellingham, 2010, p. 43). If employees feel unsure about their role in the new company, they will gladly leave their position for an organization that provides them with job security. What can you do to ensure that your organization does not lose human capital because of miscommunication?

In this week’s assignment, you analyze HR’s communication failures. Before completing this assignment, review/google Chapter 2 of the Bellingham Course Text, focusing on the process of openly communicating with all employees regarding potential compensation plans to retain valued employees. Then, examine the scenario presented below to evaluate methods for communicating employee value.


Mark has been a valued member of Fantastic Findings for many years. Employees look to him for guidance, support, and input when conducting day-to-day business operations. Over the past 2 years, Mark has held somewhat of an unofficial senior management title, as many consider him to be rather far up on the hierarchal chain of procedures. Management has also been known to stop by Mark’s office to “pick his brain” on potential products and new sources of revenue. A top executive once praised him in a multidepartment meeting, saying that she did not know what the organization would do without his successful ability to predict market patterns. HR has not codified Mark’s formal title since he started with the company, but the HR manager has awarded him with many compensation incentives and favorable remarks.

As pre-merger dealings begin to impact the dynamics of Fantastic Findings, Mark and others in the office notice an informal changing of the guards. Mark, who has held the corner office located to the side of the large meeting room for the past year, is informed through a massive HR e-mail that his room is one of many on the floor that is now needed for supervisors from the acquired organization. Mark has also noticed that some of his informal job responsibilities have formally shifted to the new supervisor’s control. A colleague even told Mark that the new supervisor became annoyed when an employee went to Mark for approval, as this was his “domain now.” Many employees who have a history of working with Mark have questioned him about these changes. Mark is at a loss for words, as he has yet to hear anything from the HR department about the reasons behind these seemingly personal attacks. Mark has stopped into the HR department many times but is always told that the HR manager is too busy with the merger to meet with him. When attempting to communicate through e-mail, Mark receives an automated response that all concerns revolving around the merger will be addressed at the next town hall meeting.

Mark’s frustration with HR’s lack of communication and the embarrassment of being downsized to a smaller office has evolved into resentment as coworkers innocently poke fun at him as now being viewed as “one of the common folk.” Though Mark had never been told that he was a supervisor, the office culture had begun to think of him as one due to his expansive knowledge base and the way in which he worked closely with different levels of employees.

Mark begins to question the wisdom of staying with Fantastic Findings. He has always looked at himself as a valued member of the team’s infrastructure, but he now feels that recent actions demonstrate otherwise. No one has taken the time to explain Mark’s value in the organization; thus, he believes no one must care about the hard work he has done to make Fantastic Findings truly fantastic. A month after the acquisition, Mark decides to take a job in a competing firm. The new management is clueless as to how they let a valued employee get away.

To complete this Assignment, respond to the following in a 2- to 3-page APA style paper (include references):

·         Analyze HR’s communication failures.

o    Using the scenario above, this week’s Learning Resources and your own scholarly research, explain how HR’s lack of informal and formal communication can influence an employee to feel as if their status has decreased as a result of an M&A.

o    Describe at least two communication best practices that HR could use going forward to reduce the chances of more employees leaving.

·         Evaluate methods for communicating employee value.

o    Justify who is in charge of communicating employee value: HR, management, or both?

§  Specifically, in Mark’s case, who is more responsible for the miscommunication? Explain your answer citing specific examples.

o    Identify at least two strategies you would use to acknowledge an employee’s value to the future success of an organization.

§  How might these strategies be employed within a newly merged company?


o    Cite two ways open communication can enhance feelings of job security and help to retain valuable employees. Support your reasoning using additional research and personal experience.



  • Getting People and Culture Right in Mergers and Acquisitions
    • Chapter 2, “Key Talent Retention”

      This chapter presents a critical element in the post-merger success of M&As: key talent retention. Bellingham outlines an eight-step process that can be used to increase the probability of highly talented employees staying in a newly merged or acquired organization. Included in these steps are the importance of open and honest communication with employees and the value of instilling a trusting culture.

Subject Business
Due By (Pacific Time) 11/28/2014 11:00 am
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