Before the world knew that Microsoft had reached an agreement to buy LinkedIn for $26.2 billion, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner gave his employees the news in a 1,700-word email.
In it, he acknowledged the “sense of excitement, fear, sadness” that many of his 10,000 employees must be feeling. It would make sense that some of them would be fearful. Microsoft’s 2013 multi-billion-dollar acquisition, Nokia, ended with the company laying off thousands in its phone division.
Major social media acquisitions have also met with mixed results, though leaders of acquisitive large companies seem to have learned from the mistakes of Myspace and Bebo.
Weiner is expected to stay on as LinkedIn’s chief executive and report to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. In his email, Weiner asked employees to “imagine a world where we’re no longer looking up at Tech Titans such as Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook, and wondering what it would be like to operate at their extraordinary scale—because we’re one of them.”