Integration after the Close

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    Sometimes as a consultant, we are pulled into an organization after the merger is closed to “fix” problems related to poor or little integration efforts, such as culture clashes. In these cases, what might be the most critical starting point?



    Consider examining the benefits/synergies articulated by the deal team to justify the transaction. If these were well quantified, and reduced to driver-based assumptions, a reasonable place to start would be revisiting these and conducting a post-mortem to see how successful the combined organization was at achieving them. If the organization has fallen short but the business case for those benefits remains valid, then the opportunity to bring the benefits to fruition should be pursued. It might be impractical to try a do-over at integration; but bringing surviving personnel from both sides together to reexamine the now-current process may afford an opportunity for them to work together to forge a better solution that accomplishes the original goals. The perceived impediments to it working the first time around–e.g., cultural differences–should be openly acknowledged and consciously combatted as the team works together to forge a new path.

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