Selling a business can be an emotional ride. Often times the easy part is the transaction itself. Most owners – and their employees – are thinking, so what happens next? The activities that take place after close can be the most important part of having a successful transition.
At a recent industry event, I was told that Marco has the ideal model for integrating acquired companies. Why is that? Our track record of competency in Business IT Services such as Managed IT and Managed Print allow us to expand the client relationship and create career paths for employees.
We recognize that it is mutually important to ensure we have a good integration plan. Here’s what we do to set both of us up for a successful outcome:
- On-site introduction
Announcing the sale to employees is a big moment for the owner, employees and Marco. It provides them an opportunity to get to know the personality of our company and for our team to get to know them a little better. This initial on-site meeting includes a social component that is reflective of Marco’s culture. It always goes better than expected and is considered a productive and fun day.
- Integration plan
Marco has built a strong brand and culture that people want to be a part of. We create energy at the initial meeting and want that momentum to continue. We want to become better together.
Our proven integration strategy begins during due diligence and continues after close, with a goal to be fully integrated as quickly as possible. This allows us to bring our well-established processes, resources and solution offerings to the market right away. It includes everything from branding and communication to technology and business systems. More often than not, once we begin the process, employees are asking us to expedite the integration.
- Resources and support
From customer care to sales, service, operations and human resources, we have teams on-site training and collaborating with our new employees on processes and best practices. This on-site approach allows employees to feel our culture and meet their new team members. Companies we acquire know their businesses best. Having one-on-one interaction allows us to learn more about their operations and helps determine how we can mostly effectively integrate their business processes into ours.
- Customer integration
An important part of integration is getting to know our new customers better and letting them know they are working with a well-established industry leader. We ask our new sales representatives to invite their customers to a “Meet the CEO” event to learn more about Marco, our commitment to customer service and our expanded solution offerings. Being a sales guy at heart, one of my favorite things is to personally host this event and tell Marco’s story. We want to add value while also giving them a feel for our company, personality and track record of performance.
- Expanded solutions
Initially, we stay focused on what the company sells and meeting the needs of their customers during the transition. We then begin to bring other solutions from our portfolio such as Managed IT Services and Managed Print Services to the customer base. This gives our sales team an opportunity to engage with their customers in a consultative way and bring new value to the relationship.
We understand that every acquisition is unique in its own way. Each integration gives us an opportunity to continue to refine our processes, and we’re always looking for the best outcome.
Success is driven by leadership engagement and collaboration on both sides.
Integration is defined as “combining one thing with another so that they become a whole.” When done right, that’s exactly how it should feel.