3 Major Pitfalls to Avoid During Post-Merger Integrations (Plus Free Template!)

3 Major Pitfalls to Avoid During Post-Merger Integration (Plus Free Template!)

AOL and Time Warner. Daimler Chrysler. Sprint and Nextel. Quaker Oats and Snapple.

You see where this is going, right?

I admit: the role of Monday morning quarterback is not very challenging – particularly in these four cases. If nothing else, they serve as a prime reminder that even the highest flyers can – and do – fall, and fall hard.

There was a small amount of pure bad luck – the dot-com bubble burst AOL’s value, high gas prices stopped Chrysler’s SUVs in their tracks – but a large number of merger integrations fail for completely foreseeable reasons – and a good dose of human error.

In this Process Street post, I’m going to look at the three pitfalls and why they have such a huge impact on the success (or lack thereof) of your post-merger integration.

If you just came for the free template, you can grab it below:


Click here to get the Post-Merger Integration (PMI) Checklist workflow!

This workflow is designed to walk you through every stage of the post-merger integration process from pre-planning to post-mortem. While the step-by-step process will ensure nothing gets forgotten, it also provides ample space to document important decisions and data. Features like Dynamic Role Assignments, Due Dates, and Approvals keep everyone on the same page and make it immediately apparent if something is headed off course.

Unexpected obstacles will always pop up, but the PMI Process Checklist will help you prepare for the worst and make your integration run smoothly.

With that out of the way, let’s go through the most common ways it can all go wrong:

Let’s talk about some bad decisions!
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How to Build a Strong Company Culture for Your Remote Team

How to Build a Strong Company Culture for Your Remote Team

This is a guest post by David Miller, a technical writer & edu-tech enthusiast currently pursuing research in project management software. You can find him on Twitter, or writing for the ProProfs Project.

If I ask you to select a few colleagues in your company and take a survey of how well they understand their company’s culture, how do you think they’d score?

Not so sure?

Now, think about remote teams.

Teams you don’t even talk on a regular basis – how sure are you that they know your company’s values or culture?

Let’s take an example.

According to a PMI study, 83% of respondents spend at least an hour or two working remotely every day. Among which the percentage of remote employees stand at:

  • 47% – Business Owners
  • 47% – Managers
  • 50% – Executives
  • 36% – Team Members

Now, as you can see that most upper-management employees are usually working remotely with the company, and if they themselves don’t possess a firm grasp on company culture – how will they pass it on to their team members?

Usually, remote team members are simply assigned tasks with a due date and it is all professional.

But, what most companies don’t realize is that it is really crucial for everyone who is part of a company to understand their values and culture.

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Key Takeaways from 5 Excellent Company Culture Examples

company-culture-examples

It is by no means easy for any organization to establish a strong identity.

It takes excellent leadership from the get-go to clearly define values, goals, and objectives that stakeholders can stand by and employees feel motivated to forward with consistent high-quality performance.

This is proving increasingly challenging for businesses as there is no clear solution, no clear method to getting it right.

But it’s time serious measures were taken to do something about it.

According to research by Deloitte, culture and engagement is the most important issue companies face around the world, with 87% of organizations citing culture and engagement as one of their top challenges, and 50% call the problem “very important.”

The importance of company culture has become increasingly important over the last couple of decades, as younger generations demand a work environment that feels nurturing, encourages collaboration, and offers challenges that keep them engaged and present opportunities to make a notable impact in some way.

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3 Steps to Cultivate an Inclusive Workplace in a Conflicted World

inclusive workplaceThis article is a guest post from Wendy Dessler; a super-connector who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans.

It’s easy to check a few boxes when it comes to backgrounds and ethnicities, but does that really equal inclusivity?

Let’s face it, these are conflicted times. Everything seems to be coming to a head, and as workforce leaders, we need to make it a priority to make sure people feel valued.

Diversity is more than just a buzzword.

Diverse companies have a better reputation, and they also reap the endless benefits of having people from a variety of cultures, experiences, and backgrounds. Even if you don’t think inclusivity and diversity is a real issue today, it is.

An unfortunate 44 percent of managers are “too busy” to bother with diversity initiative. Including more people and encouraging a variety of perspectives does take time. It’s not always easy. It’s a team effort in many ways, yet it’s so essential to success today.

It’s not all about diversity. It’s also about building a culture of respect and appreciation.

We’ve all experienced working somewhere where we didn’t feel welcome. Maybe the leaders were too harsh and demanding. Maybe the hours were ridiculous. These jobs aren’t worth keeping, and they cause employees to feel undervalued.

You work hard to bring the best talent into your company. Don’t you want those individuals to feel excited about where they work? Believe it or not, it’s hard to find top talent today. According to the ManpowerGroup Talent Shortage research, 45 percent of employers across the globe struggle to find the skills they need. This is the highest in over a decade.

It’s time for your company to thrive thanks to different perspectives, skills, and personalities. Give your top performing employees a reason to love working at your organization.

If you’re ready to create an inclusive environment built for thriving, keep reading this Process Street article to explore the top 3 steps for cultivating diversity, inclusivity, and more.

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How to Build Better Employee Accountability with Processes

According to the American Management Association, one-quarter of workers seem to avoid responsibility on the job on average, and 21% of companies believe that the figure is as high as 30-50%. From these stats, it’s clear that low employee accountability is wasting company money on a massive scale.

At the same time, almost two thirds of employees believe their company does not have a strong culture. The link between these two factors is strong, argues management consultant and author Roger Connors. Connors blends The Wizard of Oz with now-influential writings on employee accountability in a series of best-selling leadership books including The Oz Principle and Change the Culture, Change the Game. In the latter, he says:

“Our experience proves that accountability, done the right way, produces greater transparency and openness, enhanced teamwork and trust, effective communication and dialogue, thorough execution and follow-through, sharper clarity, and a tighter focus on results. Accountability should be the strongest thread that runs through the complex fabric of any organization” — Roger Connors, Change the Culture, Change the Game

To paraphrase Connor, a business’ employee accountability depends on leaders creating a transparent culture where responsibility is clear, transparent, and owned. One way to bring clarity to the way your business operates is to use standardized processes and leverage technology that helps track activity, assign tasks, and facilitate hand-offs.

In this article, we’ll go through the links between processes, accountability and company culture, and give you tips on how to improve your business in those areas. But first, let’s look closely at the ties between accountability and culture.

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How 4 Top Startups are Reinventing Organizational Structure

organizational structure headerWhen a city doubles in size, the productivity per person increases by 15%. When a company doubles in size, the opposite happens.

Companies like Zappos see this as a fundamental problem to solve. For them, the root lies in organizational structure.

With the opportunity to be dispersed remotely and to build complex products without factories and production lines, the tech industry is particularly able to pursue innovative approaches to structure, management, and organization.

Increased self-management, remote working, and task forces instead of departments, are all emerging trends which lend themselves to growing businesses.

Elon Musk talks about his businesses innovating the production process as much as the product. Mark Zuckerberg describes Facebook’s structures and organization as its biggest asset.

Ethan Bernstein, Assistant Professor of Leadership in Organizational Behavior at Harvard Business School, adds:

…[O]rganizations who are increasingly thinking about structure as an advantage and a form of making their employees more productive, will continue to evolve and innovate in this direction. And that’s something I think we’ll see across all organizations, regardless of whether they are trying to deliver “wow” to customers, or trying to do something very different.

So what are the competing philosophies which are driving these trends within the industry? Which companies have implemented the most extreme reorganizations and how have they dealt with the changes?

In this article we’ll look at:

  • Zappos: How they implemented Holacracy, with a why and how explanation.
  • Buffer: The steps they took to prioritize the individual within the company over management structures, with the challenges they faced and the lessons they learned.
  • Zapier: How they reflect these general shifts and why they chose not to dive in to extreme organizational innovation.
  • Basecamp: The marriage of many competing philosophies documented through their company handbook.
  • Process Street: The tool which helps you build the machine which builds the machine.

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How to Improve Your Software Development Culture and Product Quality

software-development-culture

Aside from the raw product you’re selling, company culture is everything.

It’s made up of your work environment, ethics, mission, expectations, and goals. You can have a great product, but without a solid culture to back it up, its development can fall apart.

Buffer, for example, has a notable culture of transparency. All employee salaries are published for co-workers and the public to see. They emphasize working out loud and being receptive to one another.

On the other hand, Amazon is noted for its toxic culture that exhausts employees and holds “unreasonably high” expectations.

Which side of the spectrum are you on?

In software companies, it’s important to promote a culture of communication and transparency. What would an issue tracking system look like for a company with poor culture? Pretty desolate.

In this article, I’m going to give examples of how different software companies bolster their QA efforts with a strong culture, and why that’s so important.

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Why Working For a Startup is Like Being Lost in Space

working for a startup

Working at a startup, you can often feel like you’re lost in space — thrown into the unknown, feeling lost and confused.

It’s a strange world, and something you have to quickly adjust to if you’re going to survive. The hours are longer, the workflow is intense and the expectations are like nothing you’ll have known before.

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