Thursday, September 25, 2014

7 + 4 steps to get your M&A to succeed

40 to 80% of mergers fail to meet objectives.  This reported study of 94 mergers between 2004 - 2008 confirms what most of us see in failed change attempts. Leadership is the key.

There are 3 key findings:

(1) Leadership capabilities in both acquirers and targets predict success and are equally important

(2) 7 specific leadership competences for acquirers and 4 for targets predict success.

(3) Senior leadership capabilities in acquirers and middle management leadership in targets have the greatest effect on success.

Acquirer Leaders:
  1. Motivate others
  2. Influence others
  3. Build relationships
  4. Develop others
  5. Act with integrity
  6. Show adaptability
  7. Focus on customer needs

Target Leaders:
  1. Motivate others
  2. Influence others
  3. Build relationships
  4. Provide direction

In the positively performing deals, based on financial returns, companies with all 7 competences outperformed their country index by 8.4% and their industry index by 10.4%.

Key takeaways:
  • Do your due diligence on leadership capabilities - they predict success
  •  Assess collective leadership capabilities of acquirer and target as part of your due diligence, and integration planning.
  • Consider also beneficial contracts to retain middle managers in targets

The Leaders Who Make M&A Work
By J. Keith Dunbar

Harvard Business Review Sept 2014 p28


Change Leader Programs

Anne Riches offers 1/2 day, 1 to 2 days, and longitudinal programs that develop managers into better change leaders who deliver growth and productivity for their business. 

However acquiring the mindset and capability to deliver through successful leadership competencies doesn't happen as a quick fix.

The more you put in, the more you get out.

The focus is on leading the people side of change as an effective, inspirational and motivational leader - it's not simply or only about processes and models. it's about holding a mirror up and discovering whether you see a genuine change leader. if you do, we'll build on it. if you don't, we work to make you the best leader you can be.

For more information, contact Anne at

And see her website for testimonials from businesses that have benefited from Anne's interventions:

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A great video on why performance rankings don't work

Most performance management systems are set up on entirely the wrong premise - if you follow the neuroscientific research.

Well worth watching.

Why Your Brain Responds to Performance Ratings