Good morning Dinks. A couple of months ago I announced my company is being sold to a competitor. The sale started in September and it’s expected to close any day now, this is the definition of bad timing. Who wants to go into the holidays worrying if they’re going to have a job in January? To say the last few months have been stressful with uncertainty would be an understatement.
My employer is trying to maintain calm in an unsettling situation. “It’s business as usual until said otherwise” they keep telling us in every announcement, as if that makes employees feel more at ease. I live in a world of organization and planning, so any changes – big or small – completely throw me out of my comfort zone. When your company announces they are being sold and the transition period starts the workplace is anything but business as usual.
Everyone’s out for blood aka their job
When a company is sold and two fully staffed workforces must merge into one, chaos starts. Your colleagues are no longer your co-workers, now they’re your competition. I though financial planners fighting for investment sales was cut throat, it’s nothing compared to the ruthlessness that comes when employees are fighting to keep their jobs.
I work in digital marketing and all of a sudden everyone has a new creative idea; everyone wants to start a new project and show off their talents…no matter who they have to step on along the way. Even team leaders and managers and fighting for a moment of the VP’s attention.
Here’s the question to ask, if we are being sold and in two to three months and are company will no longer exist why are we starting new projects and spending new money? It makes absolutely no sense. I can’t go to a conference and increase my skills for $1000, but my manager can spend $25,000 on a brand new project. How does that make sense? It doesn’t. However the people controlling the budget have the power and therefore they can spend it as they want, even if it doesn’t make sense. But she’ll look good when our new employer comes in so now because she’s abusing her power she has the upper hand.
Stepping on toes is just the beginning
When you are under a microscope everyone wants to look good. We have no information on how many jobs will be cut or saved and we have no idea of the organizational structure of our new employer. Therefore everyone wants to showcase their skills and gain new skills.
Employees are trying to get on projects they’ve never worked on because the more exposure the better, right? In a perfect world yes, the more skills you have and the more experience on your resume the better. But brown-nosing creates a very hostile work environment during the interim.
Speculation creates inequality
When there is uncertainty in the workplace everyone wants to be in the know because employees want to know if they’re going to have a job come the New year. As the transition continues our workplace seems to be on a need-to-know basis and this creates inequality. When some people are in meetings and others aren’t it creates speculation, gossip and resentment towards your co-workers. Trust me when I say this is a very unhealthy work environment.