To tell or not to tell…. At the end of the day secrets are not usually a good idea. But you may have good reasons to not tell your staff you are selling.
We have outlined a few pros and cons of telling your employees that you are selling your practice….
- Employees can sometimes be beneficial to the sale. If they enjoy working there they may help by being enthusiastic and actually support the sale;
- No unexpected reactions when the time comes to exchange contracts. Employees can sometimes feel like family and will feel betrayed if you don’t tell them;
- They may actually be interested in purchasing it themselves, or know someone who is;
- Employees may accidentally tell patients that the practice is on the market;
- Employees may leak the information to suppliers or competitors;
- They may start looking for other jobs, due to uncertainty;
- Uncertainty can also make employees feel unmotivated. They may ask themselves if the new owner is going to keep them on;
- They may say the wrong thing to the prospect and put them off;
One way to handle this issue it is to hold an employee meeting a week before settlement. Get the purchaser on board and ask them to come in for the meeting (it is in their best interest to attend). Talk to the purchaser about what you want them to say. i.e. It will be business as usual and no major changes will be made. The buyer can also talk about how much they will rely on the staff upfront as they learn how the practice works etc. Once the employees have met the buyer and have been reassured, they often get quite excited about the prospect of having fresh management. After all change can be as good as a holiday.