Successfully Integrating Culture during a Merger or Acquisition

Duration: 60 Minutes
During a significant change like a merger or acquisition, listening, architecting and integrating both cultures are critical for maximizing the value of the deal. Organizations that thrive in today's complex business environment benefit from dynamic, robust cultures. It's common knowledge that mergers often fail or fall short of realizing expected value due to complications during cultural integration. When surveyed, many CEOs reported that they had no plan in place for integration and even if they did, they wished in hindsight that they'd had devoted more time and resources to cultural integration.
Mergers and Acquisitions Best Practices for Successful Integration
Instructor: Claudette Rowley
Product ID: 504659
Why do we continue to perpetuate a problem we can solve? Bain Consulting reported that based on the survey data and anecdotal conversations with CEOs, executive leaders often don't know what to do when they need to address cultural integration. Cultural integration and cultural change are deemed "fuzzy" right brain areas that most action-oriented, results driven CEOs were challenged to address. Yet, successfully integrating the cultures of two different companies matters because culture is a significant organizational driver, both positively and negatively. What is hardest to see, quantify or examine often holds the most power in an organization. Culture can encompass how companies communicate, how people and teams relate, how conflict is handled, organizational beliefs, mindsets, emotions and how events are interpreted – all of which influence how problems are solved and decisions are made.

On the quantitative side, 83% of mergers fail and 50% of leaders are terminated when these change initiatives fail to produce value. In fact, a 2011 global survey conducted by Aon Hewitt uncovered that unsuccessful cultural integration was the number two driver of deal failure. The number one driver of deal failure was "integration/implementation took longer than expected" which in and of itself is adversely impacted by unsuccessful cultural integration.

Without successful integration, likely outcomes include: mediocre, at best, decisions, problems solved with band aide solutions and the exit of good talent. And the bottom line value of the deal is adversely impacted.

When faced with a "right brain" issue, such as culture, companies often try to create a linear "left brain" process to make addressing the issue. Here's the problem with that: It doesn't typically work in implementation or it doesn't work thoroughly enough over the long term. Ideally any problem would be solved using both our linear, analytical left brain and our creative, intuitive right brain. Cultural integration is no different. Because culture is often rooted in the unspoken, believed, the unintentional and the symbolic, it deserves plenty of right brain creative attention.

During the webinar, we'll discuss a five step Cultural Integration Design process that helps two different companies come together to form a culture that works together well. By executing this five-step process, executive leaders retain and increase the value of their business during a merger or acquisition. The method includes these five steps: Cultural Intelligence Assessment, Cultural Profile, Cultural Architecture, Design & Prototype and Integrate & Train.

Objectives of the Presentation
  • Understand definitions of culture
  • Identify culture's role in your organization's success or failure
  • Discuss key principles to assessing, influencing and designing culture
  • Uncover what matters most to employees during cultural integration
  • Learn a five step process for successfully integrating culture during a merger, acquisition or any significant change
Why Should you Attend
According to a Deloitte survey, 43% of CFOs named post-deal integration a top concern. A 2004 Mercer survey revealed that 75% of executives cited "harmonizing culture and communicating with employees" as the most important factors for successful post-merger integration.
A 2011 global survey conducted by Aon Hewitt discovered that unsuccessful cultural integration was the number two driver of deal failure. The number one driver of deal failure was "integration/implementation took longer than expected" which in and of itself is adversely impacted by unsuccessful cultural integration.

Areas Covered
  • Understand the definition of culture and its role in your organization's success or failure
  • Discuss key principles to assessing, influencing and designing culture
  • Review a five-step process for successfully integrating culture during a merger, acquisition or any significant change
  • Key principles to keep in mind during cultural integration
  • How to get buy-in from all levels of both organizations
  • How cultural integration increases the intangible value of a company
  • Why many mergers fail and what CEOs can do to prevent these failures
Who will Benefit
The webinar will benefit:
  • C-Level Leaders
  • Senior Leaders
  • Senior Managers
  • Mid-Level Managers
  • Project Team Leaders
Topic Background
When a company is acquired or two companies merge, planning for effective cultural integration is forgotten, an afterthought or only addressed when the people side of the merger isn't working.
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Instructor Profile:
Claudette Rowley, Cultural Brilliance™ CEO, is a cultural design and change management consultant with a knack for building strategic plans and orchestrating organizational changes that boost business performance and increase employee engagement at the same time.

For the past fifteen years, Claudette has consulted, trained and coached executive leaders and management teams at Fortune 1000 companies, small businesses and start-ups to create a pro-active and innovative workplace culture that delivers outstanding results throughout all areas of an organization. Claudette is the creator of the Cultural Brilliance™ Methodology, author of Embrace Your Brilliance and co-host of the globally syndicated radio show, Cultural Brilliance™. She holds a Masters degree from the University of Michigan, is a certified coach through International Coach Federation and has trained in leading methodologies in organizational development, conflict resolution, mediation, the Predictable Success business life cycle model, and relationship systems.
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