Wednesday, April 25, 2007

100 Day Integration Plan Success Story

We recently worked with a mid-sized company that had been forced into a merger roughly a year ago. The investors thought it "made sense" to have the 2 companies operating under the same umbrella and literally jammed them under the same roof. Profits were down, turn-over and tensions were high. The investors were ready to take what money they could get out of the deal before things fell apart any further.
The new CEO of the company came to us and asked for our help on behalf of his company and of the investors. We met with the investors and laid out our plan.

Step 1. Assess

We did an Integration assessment of the organization. We broke the assessment down by management, workers, and by which company they had come from before the merger.

Step 2. Evaluate the Data

We evaluated the data and looked for the similarities and differences in the responses. What we found was shocking. There had been no attempt by management to integrate any of the processes on either side together. Operationally the two companies couldn't have been different. Accounting, decision making, management, communication were all diametrically opposed to one another.

Step 3. Make a plan

We sat down with the CEO and came up with our 100 day integration plan. The first step was to get buy-in from the employees that the integration process was going to be worth it. Once we achieved this, we would go ahead with our step-by-step plan to get this company up and running again.

Step 4. Put it into action

We set up a company-wide meeting and the CEO laid all of his cards on the table. He told his people that the investors were getting ready to throw the company on the chopping block and asked for their support in getting their collective necks out of the noose. Within the first week, 10% of the staff had handed in their 2-week notices. Once we had gotten the non-committed people out of the equation we began integrating all of their processes together step-by-step, constantly checking in with the people to make sure we weren't going too fast and that they were still bought in to the process.
Over the next 2 months, the company lost another 5% of its employees. However, changes had already begun to take place within the organization. Profits were rising, morale was up, people were working together.

Step 5. Re-assess

The last step was to reassess the organization. Our final assessment showed that the organization had come together as one. Their business processes, and more importantly their people, had finally been integrated together. We did a presentation with the CEO for the investors on all that we had done, and what the organization had accomplished in the 100 days. After very little deliberation, the investors decided to let the company continue on its path and kept it off of the chopping block. This company today has become one of the leaders in its industry.