Here’s how I help colleagues align post-merger:
You as the client take the first step. By identifying who is collaborating with whom. In those business areas where collaboration must succeed. Who with whom
I then guide colleagues to alignment. On those topics which will make or break their collaboration. Such as: setting up lines of communication, defining joint decision making, leading cross-border teams, harmonizing key processes, integrating products and services, engaging with customers and suppliers.
Regardless of the topic addressed we will always take the same three steps:
First, explain to each other what your fundamental approach is. The logic behind it. What you do. How you do it. Why you do it in that way. Because you can’t integrate effectively what you don’t understand fully. Including understanding, and therefore explaining, your own logic.
Second, on the basis of that deep understanding of the each other’s logic, propose how best to integrate those approaches. Keeping in mind that integration can take three forms: full integration, partial integration, no integration.
Depending on the specifics of the situation each of these three forms is perfectly legitimate. Integration in and of itself is not a goal. Instead, the goal is optimal collaboration. Integration is a means to an end. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Third, discuss and debate those proposals, then decide how best to proceed. The approach you come up with will most likely be a combination of the respective logics. Seldom is the optimal approach either the one or the other. It’s a hybrid. It’s a combination. The key, and perhaps only, criterium is what is best for the business.
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