My Employer Merged (Was Acquired) What Do I Do?
JD Vaughn, Business and Personal Performance Coach and Recruiter
If you just learned that your firm has merged and added dozens if not hundreds of personnel to the joined company, what do you do to protect your job, income and family?
Hopefully you need to do nothing new. After all you have not just been providing engineering, technical, sales or marketing services for your employer; you have been building long term relationships with your customers. Over the years you have been helping your contacts learn about the industry, select the right products and services at the right prices and have established yourself as a “go to resource” for all your customers AV/telecom, networking or cloud services needs. You are confident you can leverage the trust relationships with your customers to another firm quite easily. You are very comfortable knowing you can easily transition to another firm joined at the hip with your valuable customers and their purchasing power….. if you must.
But what if you have not operated in a way that gives you access to all your customers regardless of your employer in the future? What if you are not certain your customers will follow or choose you wherever you go? What action should you take in the short term to protect your income, future and family?
First of all, before we address that question, vow to never get into this situation again and after you secure your role in the short term, promise yourself that you will find ways to join your customers to you forever in the future. (Sage Research can help you build these kinds of relationships in the future, contact us for 2 free coaching sessions on “Grafting to Your Customers”).
But what do you do today to reduce the uncertainty and accompanying anxiety that comes along with being involved in a merger and acquisition that you know will ultimately result in future reductions in force? After all, they already have all the SEs, system architects, project managers, and sales and marketing people they need.
First of all remain calm and remember that networking is a part of your day to day job with your current employer. Building relationships with your customers, with contacts within your customer’s organization is a vital part of your current role. And you should know that 70% of all new jobs are found through networking. Less than 16% of jobs are found by sending resumes to jobs posted on job boards. And there are 250 applicants for every posted job. You should also recall that 80% of new jobs are not posted; they are found through networking and social media.
So what do you do in the short term?
You can do right by your current employer, yourself and your customers, (as well as the industry) by networking with and inside your customer’s organization and the organizations of your customers related, connected and preferred other vendors.
Know your customers future plans for AV, telecom, networks, security, cloud services, and any other related future service(s). Learn and know your customers preferred vendors as you connect with other key contacts inside your customers organization and inside the related vendor organizations.
Network vertically and horizontally with your customers, their other preferred vendors related to and or connected to your space. Learn the names of and begin to build relationships with your counterparts and their managers across all the products and services that connect to and or are remotely connected to your products and services.
Why should your customers and their other vendors want to network with you; because you are making yourself invaluable offering up support and valuable oversight for their related industry and product initiatives. You know your customer’s initiatives and strategies. You are sharing your company’s new product and services strategies in your QBRs (Quarterly Business Reviews) and you are being briefed by your customers and their vendors during theirs as well.
When you make yourself a valuable resource to your customers and their related and associated vendors and build a network within this group, you now have a network of organizations and people to keep you apprised of all kinds of opportunities both within and outside your current merged or acquired employer. You are a vital part of your customers’ communications and technology team.
You can then leverage this for job security within your current firm or use your expanded network to find your next new opportunity. Recall that 70% of all new jobs are found through networking. You can start doing this today as you work to make yourself merger and acquisition proof.
Merger and acquisitions are a fact of life in our industry. They are not going away. But we can develop strategies to control and shape the impact on our lives.
For help in developing strategies for integrating more thoroughly into your customers’ organizations or for help in finding personnel that understand how to ”Graft to Customers” contact JD Vaughn, Sage Research firstname.lastname@example.org