The intersection between HR strategy and HR technology

, , ,

US Businesses for Sale?

systematicHR Avatar

Back in I guess what was the 80’s, there was all the rage over Japanese money buying US property and business.  Well times have changed and there is an interesting dichotomy going on.  Now, the U.S. economy is outsourcing to China and India (and others).  Low skilled labor is going outside of the U.S. and we’re focusing on senior talent to produce the innovations that really make businesses profits.  Here’s the interesting thing – as we are outsourcing/offshoring more, it’s entirely possible that we’re going to start getting bought up by Europe.

Let’s think about this:  M&A activity is going to be rising – it always does at about this time.  Companies can be had for cheap, and consolidation is about ripe to happen.  While we really haven’t seen it yet, the businesses with money are those in Europe.  After all, with the Euro at historic highs against the dollar, all U.S. businesses are comparatively cheap.

If this does happen, there are a couple things that companies to keep in mind.  HR has generally not been involved until late in the game of M&A activities.  With international M&A, we need to be looking forward and making sure we’re adequately prepared for all the cultural implications for getting acquired by an international buyer.  HR also needs to be prepared with a game plan for post-day-1 of the acquisition.  There is a huge change management issue to be resolved and when it comes to how our employees engage themselves in the business, we’re in charge.

So here are my (tongue in cheek) predictions for the next year as I see European businesses buy the U.S. to ensure proper post-M&A employee engagement:

  • U.S. companies will all of a sudden start offering 2 months of vacation
  • All U.S. companies will shut down in August
  • We’ll start operating like Germany and all unionize again

Tagged in :

systematicHR Avatar