We all understand and value the importance of cultural integration in any M&A project. Taking care of company culture is as important as cultural background of people involved. What are the best practices for a cross border global merger?
I would say a strong IMO team that aware of culture, regulatory requirements and can operate across border, supported with empowered team on the ground would be one critical elements for a successful cross border global merger.
Awareness of the culture, regulations and language barriers is the first step. Understanding one how sales process, business development process, tax regulations, people interactions and way of business being done in other countries and cultures help make the acquisition smooth and successful
Early discussion and awareness. Your M&A team getting together and sharing core values, processes, policies and best practices of each organization and finding a way to either blend the two organization cultures or supporting them separately will create a successful outcome. Also approaching it as not one organization is superior to the other, just because Company A is buying Company B does not necessarily mean Company A’s business processes are correct. Pushing change on individuals too soon can create unnecessary friction that can be avoided by getting a better understanding of why business is being conducted in the way it is.
I agree Rochelle, awareness is critical when you have cross-cultural differences. When I think of a cross-border merger, the potential differences in cultural could be driven by nationality and even local customs and culture. For many large countries there are regional cultural differences that you can’t make a broad stroke by country. An example in my home country of Canada, with pipelines and oil and gas, you may get very different viewpoints on the role oil and gas industry play in our country’s economy vs. an someone who grew up in Eastern Canada.
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