AEC Branding After a Merger or Acquisition, with Donya Edler

Episode 4:

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Since guesting on our podcast, Donya Edler has joined Smartegies as our new Executive Vice President. She brings over 25 years of professional marketing, communications, and human resources experience in both the public and private sectors. Throughout her career, she has experienced several mergers and acquisitions with very different outcomes on employee trust and morale, company culture, and branding.

During the episode, Donya talks to hosts Katie Cash and Judy Sparks about the critical period following the announcement of a merger or acquisition. She also shares powerful strategies for addressing employee concerns and building a new company culture for the resulting organization.

Honesty, authenticity, and openness are the keys to smoothing the process in a merger or acquisition. Investing the time and resources necessary can help AEC firms retain talent and boost morale through the process. Rather than attempting to go it alone, firms should consider hiring experienced outside advisors to help them rebrand following a merger or acquisition. Firms can also consult with clients for feedback that helps identify and address hidden pain points that may have been created by the merger.

We hope that Donya’s wisdom will be invaluable in helping you navigate the sometimes tricky internal and external challenges that are created by a merger or acquisition. You can find this episode, and many other informative conversations dedicated to helping your firm maximize the impact of your AEC marketing, by visiting us at As always, we would greatly appreciate it if you gave us a rating to let us know how we’re doing. Thanks for listening!


What You Will Learn:

  • Why mergers and acquisitions are becoming increasingly common in the design and construction space
  • What it looks like from all sides of mergers, acquisitions, and joint ventures.
  • The crucial period immediately after announcing a merger or acquisition and why employee trust and morale tend to drop in that period
  • Importance of internal communication during the transition
  • Why firms of all sizes can struggle with the challenge of merging cultures, and why it is important to have a trusted brand as well as employees within the company who share that trust
  • The importance of bringing acquired employees into the cultural conversation
  • The value of investing in a strategy firm specializing in AEC marketing and AEC branding to help lead a rebranding effort


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