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Industrial and Commercial Training, vol. 46 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0019-7858

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Article

Adrian McLean

Changing organizations is not an easy business. At least, changing them in a way which is both intended and which entails a minimum of unnecessary conflict, disruption and…

Abstract

Changing organizations is not an easy business. At least, changing them in a way which is both intended and which entails a minimum of unnecessary conflict, disruption and general trauma has proved to be especially difficult. Attempts to understand the reasons for these difficulties and to develop ways of avoiding them have led to the emergence of a large (and growing) body of theory and techniques known as Organization Development. Like any new discipline or professional body however, the outward impression of a cohesive comprehensive and integrated set of ideas and practices masks the internal state of questioning and uncertainty, of caution and intuition, and sometimes of diverse, sometimes overlapping and sometimes competing explanations of events.

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Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Article

Adrian McLean

Personnel specialists often bear the brunt of organisational change. Whether through the painful experiences of managing a redundancy, or as company representatives…

Abstract

Personnel specialists often bear the brunt of organisational change. Whether through the painful experiences of managing a redundancy, or as company representatives negotiating the introduction of new technology with trade unions, the shock waves of organisational change permeate most aspects of the personnel function sooner or later. Over recent years, much effort has been directed towards understanding the processes and problems of organisational change and of developing ways of more satisfactorily dealing with it. Much of these efforts have been drawn together into a body of techniques, ideas, case studies and more general wisdom which has acquired a distinctive identity.

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Personnel Review, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article

Alistair Moffat and Adrian McLean

The purpose of this paper is to describe an intervention aimed at supporting the formation of a distinctive new culture in a post‐merger context. The work is informed by…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe an intervention aimed at supporting the formation of a distinctive new culture in a post‐merger context. The work is informed by social constructionist thinking, complexity theory and draws on a semiotic approach to the understanding of cultures.

Design/methodology/approach

The case describes an experiment in the use of social networking and web‐based technology in order to enable and support a sustained, organization‐wide conversation. In particular, it describes the combined use of two virtual platforms: a global 72‐hour, virtual conference that allowed for the participation of all 60,000 employees and a virtual forum (Culture Square) that invited ongoing discussion of the desired culture.

Findings

Social networking technologies represent powerful new ways of expanding the possibilities for participation. They can also serve as useful ways of containing the ambiguity and uncertainty associated with mergers. The use of metaphorical representations of legacy cultures can create a helpful platform for generative dialogue and cultural understanding. Legitimating the shadow conversation through the Culture Square accelerated the formation of the emergent culture and powerfully complemented the virtual conference.

Practical implications

The use of an emergent approach to the formation of a new culture calls for high tolerance of ambiguity on the part of organizational leadership. The use of online forums calls for careful facilitation early in the process. Large‐scale virtual conferences present a host of logistical challenges and call for a high level of project management capability as well as skilful local facilitation. Social networking technology enables the formation and effective functioning of virtual teams and participative creation of the new culture at reduced cost.

Originality/value

Several distinctive features of this approach make it a novel approach to post‐merger integration. The paper is of specific value to organisation development and HR professionals at a technical level and to organisation leaders considering strategies for the cultural integration of mergers.

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Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 31 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Book part

Adrian McLean and Alistair Moffat

The metaphor of marriage is frequently invoked in the context of mergers. The evidence is that the success rate for marriages is low and even worse for mergers. In this…

Abstract

The metaphor of marriage is frequently invoked in the context of mergers. The evidence is that the success rate for marriages is low and even worse for mergers. In this chapter we explore why mergers often fail to meet the expectations of either party and bring to bear insights from the relational field of marriage counselling to the challenge of achieving cultural development in the wake of a merger. Based on our experience of leading the cultural aspects of a major global merger, we propose some practical methods to help leaders create the conditions for a ‘lasting and happy marriage’.

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Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-196-1

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Article

In the last four years, since Volume I of this Bibliography first appeared, there has been an explosion of literature in all the main functional areas of business. This…

Abstract

In the last four years, since Volume I of this Bibliography first appeared, there has been an explosion of literature in all the main functional areas of business. This wealth of material poses problems for the researcher in management studies — and, of course, for the librarian: uncovering what has been written in any one area is not an easy task. This volume aims to help the librarian and the researcher overcome some of the immediate problems of identification of material. It is an annotated bibliography of management, drawing on the wide variety of literature produced by MCB University Press. Over the last four years, MCB University Press has produced an extensive range of books and serial publications covering most of the established and many of the developing areas of management. This volume, in conjunction with Volume I, provides a guide to all the material published so far.

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Management Decision, vol. 21 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Abstract

Details

Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-196-1

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Article

Rodrigo Magalhães

Change is a somewhat mysterious process which has aroused the academic interest of sociologists, psychologists, political scientists, and specialists from other fields…

Abstract

Change is a somewhat mysterious process which has aroused the academic interest of sociologists, psychologists, political scientists, and specialists from other fields. Information scientists should also be concerned with this topic, given that change seems to be the most permanent feature in this new discipline. Typical research questions such as what is change or how does change come about can be approached from many standpoints, ranging from the concepts derived from sociological and psychological theory to the very practical description of change taking place day by day.

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Aslib Proceedings, vol. 37 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0001-253X

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Article

The purpose of this paper is to show how mergers can be accomplished with minimum disruption and a positive outcome.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to show how mergers can be accomplished with minimum disruption and a positive outcome.

Design/methodology/approach

Describes how integration of employees, and their separate cultures, during a merger can be successful with the use of technology.

Findings

Organizations coming together through mergers face a steep learning curve. There are elements of the “give and take” of a marriage in buying into each other's cultural legacy. The formation of that new culture is as much about the process through which standards are arrived at as the values themselves. If a harmonious outcome can be achieved, with process and values aligned, the result will surely be the “good fit” which was promoted enthusiastically by both sides when the merger was first mooted.

Originality/value

Looks at the question of getting the best of both worlds by ensuring that during a merger of two organizations, cultural integration brings something positive to the new organization?

Details

Strategic Direction, vol. 27 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0258-0543

Keywords

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