In M&A, it is important to avoid destroying the value of the deal. You must therefore be patient and plan and create your process. From my experience, the most frequently encountered issues revolve about people – how they react to change and their reluctance and how they react when something doesn’t work as expected.

We assist our clients in setting up an effective system that allows them to spot problems early and to respond quickly. This can be achieved by holding a weekly IMO meeting and working streams to assess progress and escalate issues and risks to the SteerCo.

Once the method for tackling issues is established It’s crucial to concentrate on executing. This means ensuring that everyone knows what they’re expected to accomplish, how that will be measured, and when. It also includes clearly defining accountability (i.e. ownership of the end results) and decision making authority across the entire integrated business.

It is essential that the CEO and top managers can devote at minimum 90 percent of their time on the most important issues and not be distracted by integration tasks. It is a good idea to appoint someone who will oversee the Decision Management Office and coordinate work streams. This could be a person from the acquisition company, or it can be an emerging star within the merging company who has the support of their boss who is willing to make this commitment.