Building Bridges: The Integration of Acquired Companies
Successfully integrating acquired companies can be challenging because of people, policy, process, and technological changes for the acquired company (and often for the acquiring teams). There are many aspects to a successful integration, such as understanding the emotional climate, considering environmental factors, managing stakeholders, defining technological changes to the infrastructure and/or tools, and defining processes, all while balancing the needs of the teams fairly.
To make progress, it is essential to first build bridges with the people and seek to understand the integration team and other key members of the organization, with their strengths, expertise, needs, and existing dynamics. This foundation is a pre-requisite for building the relationships needed to project manage the merge of disparate teams.
Having played a variety of roles for acquired company integrations, on both sides of the table, I have found that certain strategies and behaviors help build these bridges. This paper suggests considerations and approaches to establishing the stakeholder connections. The optimal situation is for the project manager to be part of the main acquisition integration team; this article focuses on this scenario, with a separate set of suggestions for other scenarios.
Every employee at the company being acquired is worried about being
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