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© 2024 N. Dean Meyer and Associates Inc.
Excerpt from www.NDMA.COM, © 2024 N. Dean Meyer and Associates Inc.

Executive Summary: Detailed Benchmarks of a Successful Integration Process

be clear on what you expect, and have every right to demand

by N. Dean Meyer

A successful integration process meets the following expectations:


  • Continue to meet all existing commitments until they are explicitly changed, and continue internal investments such as training.

  • Make new commitments with respect for the time to be invested in the integration process (lost productivity).

  • Clearly define the decision maker for each type of decision at each point in the integration process.

  • Proactively help decision makers understand the costs and benefits of current and proposed commitments and internal investments so that they can choose what they'll buy (priorities) and what they'll cut (savings) within available resources.

  • Involve potential future, as well as current, stakeholders in integration decisions.

Integration Process

  • Openly communicate with everyone concerned: the vision for the new organization, the scope of component organizations affected, the integration process, its timetable, and its status.

  • Include representatives from all affected organizations on facilitation teams that plan the integration process.

  • Use facilitation teams to help stakeholders design their new organization, not make decisions for them.

  • Solicit everyone's input about the integration process and the design of the new organization.

  • Do any necessary lay-offs before or after the organization design process, but not during, so as to create a safe environment for participation in design.

  • Encourage collaboration among members of all affected organizations throughout the integration process.

  • In every aspect of the integration process (eg, design of the new organization, selection of leaders), treat people equitably without regard for which component organization they came from. That includes assigning jobs based on competence, using a selection process that is both equitable and perceived as equitable.

Personal Transition Process

  • Clearly communicate how the consolidation will affect people individually.

  • Help people deal with the personal stresses of change.

  • If there are to be headcount cuts, quickly communicate to all employees their planned retention period (leave now, stay for a migration period, or stay permanently), and offer incentives commensurate with the objective.

  • If there are to be headcount cuts, help people who will not have jobs in the new organization find employment elsewhere.

Organizational Design

  • Whenever possible, manage global groups rather than forcing people to relocate.

  • Design the new organization to meet customers' expectations of results rather than their opinions about its structure.


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