Case Study

Acquisition & Merger Integration:
Overcoming Fears & Driving Success

Conscient Strategies led the pre-merger discussions and negotiations and the post-merger integration of two international organizations.

Key Challenges

  • Redefining the portfolio of services to increase the relevancy within a changing marketplace

  • Reversing declining financial situations

  • Establishing a culture that respected the distinctly different cultures of the two original organizations and served the future, merged organization

Hurdles for the Organizations and Employees

  • Letting go of “what is” typically encounters resistance and creates stress among staff. In this organization, staff and management were challenged to re-imagine both the position of the organization in the marketplace and the portfolio of services. Pet programs and services were not exempt from analysis. “We’ve always done it that way” was not a reason to continue what was.
  • Coming together as one organization required overcoming numerous hurdles. Executives needed to align their financial management practices and views on risk as well as their leadership styles. The two Boards needed to reconcile governance and level of involvement with the organization. At the staff level, employees needed to embrace new social and professional relationships while developing and adjusting to new processes. The new organization demanded a single, new culture and common practices.
  • Making it safe for employees to go through the transition was key. Employees all along the hierarchy needed to be safe to try, to fail, to innovate, and to succeed.
  • Managing risk and financial outcome was crucial to the success of the merger. Leaders needed to develop a single view of acceptable risk. Finances needed to be rationalized to reflect common definitions and time frames.

What We Accomplished

Established a new vision

  • Redefined the positioning of the organization to be recognized as a center of innovation in the market
  • Utilized benchmarking and brainstorming to model and establish new ways of tackling issues and getting ideas flowing

Improved the financial picture

  • Repositioned the organization to drive greater revenues
  • Revised the service portfolio to optimize both the top and bottom lines

Created a new organizational structure

  • Defined new roles and responsibilities and how people and positions would interact
  • Clarified how roles would be filled from across the two original organizations
  • Led the search for a new CEO who would align with the new vision
  • Established a new Board and governance structure

Defined and Integrated a new culture

  • Defined and implemented a new culture– from “it’s how we do it” to a focus on innovation, collaboration, and responsibility
  • Infused the new culture into behaviors and actions
  • Developed and implemented processes that reflected the new culture, including areas such as operations,recruitment, feedback, and meetings

Engaged all stakeholders regardless of historical political position


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