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A Social Network View of Post-Merger Integration

Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions

ISBN: 978-1-78052-196-1, eISBN: 978-1-78052-197-8

ISSN: 1479-361X

Publication date: 1 January 2012


This chapter offers a conceptual and theoretic introduction to a contemporary view of the post-merger integration (PMI) challenge: it places the organizational-members’ internal social network at the focal point. An original viewpoint is presented in this chapter – the thinking is novel to integration literature and thought, and to social networks – that advances both research and practice of PMI. Since the network-view may be a new topic to many PMI researchers, the central discussion is preceded by a brief introduction to the concepts and techniques of social network analysis. The author offers that the organizational members’ pre-existing social network can become disrupted by integration processes, which creates pressures on the individuals’ previously stable social network. The individual members will therefore strive for a re-stabilization of their localized social network towards a specific pattern that is somewhat unique to each individual. During this social realignment there is an opportunity for integration managers to embrace this “social reconciliation.” By recognizing the individuals’ imminent stabilization point of this natural process, integration managers can proactively guide the social network toward an optimal, or productive, resting space that provides organizational benefit. This chapter puts forward the particulars of this phenomenon and offers exploratory suggestions for how a practitioner might influence the re-establishment of the organizational social network in a manner consistent with individuals’ preferences and simultaneously beneficial to the organization overall. Recommendations for follow-up research are provided.


Frantz, T.L. (2012), "A Social Network View of Post-Merger Integration", Cooper, C.L. and Finkelstein, S. (Ed.) Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions (Advances in Mergers & Acquisitions, Vol. 10), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 161-176.



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