Mercer Insights

A Frontline Issue in M&A: Managing the Message

This article presents Mercer's perspective on M&A communication management - a comprehensive, cohesive approach to running deal communciation.

Cultural and communication challenges are among the top factors that are most likely to put deal synergies at risk. These people-related transaction and integration issues are considered of greatest importance to deal success, and are one of the primary culprits when deals fail. Aggressive use of change management and communication principles is an M&A best practice that can reduce stakeholder resistance, increase synergies realized, and shorten overall implementation cycle time.

The importance of M&A communication is a frontline issue right now, as global transaction volume is up 6% in the first quarter of 2013, and the average deal size for high-growth companies in emerging markets more than doubled for deals announced in 2012.

From a deal perspective, the number of transactions is increasing, and they are growing in complexity. Add to this the diminished retention power of equity programs and the uncertainty surrounding the value of other benefits, and it becomes clear that employers can not rely solely upon the retention tools that have traditionally bound employees to companies.

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