Integration – ground up or top down approach?

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    For integration post M&A, would a top down approach undertaken by the management be more effective, or ground up initiatives by employees of the target / acquirer be more successful?



    In my experience, I believe it has to be a combination. Compared to other projects or initiatives, integration requires a more directive approach from management than you would find in normal business projects. Management has to be very clear on the deal rationale and strategy. The Integration Management office will drive the integration process, including milestones and timing. I found the “Governance Roles & Responsibilities” in section 2 of the “Integration Governance” module to be very helpful in explaining responsibilities. I think a strong governance framework is required for a successful integration. However, within a well designed framework, there is enough room for individual employees to express creativity and assume ownership. If they feel they are an integral part of a larger, well organized team, I think you can get the best of both worlds.

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