A friend of mine has been approached by a PE company that wants to buy her company. Her employees are vital to the continued success of the company and she is concerned that they might leave when they find out about the change of management.

Would it be better to tell them ahead of time that she is thinking about selling? Give them an opportunity to put in their own bid? Wait to inform them after the transaction is complete?

Each method has its own pros and cons and I would be interested in hearing from someone who has successfully navigated this transition and any advice you might have..