Pre-merger culture survey

Viewing 7 posts - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
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  • #58256
    starla Pugh
    Participant

    I completed by post-merger integration course but did not find much information on actually finding ways through due diligence to help determine the culture & overall happiness/engagement the acquiring business has. I found that a business can mark all the boxes to make a good acquisition, but if the culture is not aligned it can greatly impact the success post-merger. We’re looking for both financially healthy and culturally healthy partnerships. Does anyone have suggestions on tools to use and/or success stories when trying to identify a golden egg from a bad egg?

    #58311
    Ian Smith
    Participant

    Hi Starla,
    A lot of the time it comes down to the initial stages of a merger and how this came about. if the merger is hostile there is more than likely to be a culture clash.
    If however it appears the starts are aligned financially and strategically, the socio cultural element is usually a gut feel between leadership. one tool I have seen in the past is a third party test done for both the buyer and seller that assesses the culture of each business and makes simple checks such as appetite for change, social priorities, working culture (e.g. office or home working preference, term time requirements etc) this allows an understanding on how aligned the two groups are at least.
    But it can depend on the merger itself – e.g. hostile / competitor / client in sourcing and looks down on the newly acquired entity still as a supplier etc.

    #58333

    See there are tools for culture assessment but pre merger how can you use those is a questions. For example Mckinsey’s OHI (Organization Health Index is one tool) which is very good tool and I have personally used but pre-merger you cant do any survey. Therefore some third part agency needs to be mandated and then they can recruit some x employees, current employees, suppliers, dealers, other partners for some surveys. that is the only way to know about the inherent culture of the organization. Basis that then acquiring company can decide about this.

    #58352
    Emily Reinhart
    Participant

    I have seen the data of an annual employee survey around culture and employee engagement compared to the transitioned population and overall company scores post-close. Like folks referenced in previous replies, if you are not engaged as a consultant or business leader to do a survey ahead of the transaction, that limits the comparison data. That’s why I always advise company leadership to initiate an annual employee engagement survey regardless of where they are in the acquisition cycle.

    #58573
    Ebrima B Sawaneh
    Participant

    I think the pre-merger survey of employee opinion is important. However, culture can be assessed partly from the HR policies example policies on benefits, L&D, promotions etc. The outcome of the survey and HR policies of the target should be compared with the acquirer. Where there is a major conflict, the pre-merger integration plan should offer a solution. You may recall the major merger failure of Air India and Indian airline was partly a major difference in the compensations.

    #58577
    Raymond Teo
    Participant

    Agreed with Ebrima. If the HR policies and culture of an target company is not able to fitted into the acquiring company, this might resulted in a bad merger. I believe other form of DD, understanding of the target company’s culture will be much more important that relying on Employee’s survey. As employees might not take the survey seriously based on my experience.

    #58648
    Trevor Szutu
    Participant

    Well designed culture surveys pre-merger provide a lot of valuable insights heading into integration planning. However, poorly designed questions and low response rates pose a challenge

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