CRITICAL SUCCESSION AND MERGER INTEGRATION
When a senior executive has been
highly effective, especially in bringing about a much-needed turnaround,
the transition to a new leader is the topic of great speculation, both
internally and among the stockholder and analyst communities. And it is
often highly traumatic and disruptive within the organization.
Executive Synergies has had an opportunity to assist a key client corporation
with this situation. The CEO of a conglomerate operating in a pre-merger/acquisition
phase realized the company had various critical needs related to executive
staffing. First, the firm needed a strong handle on the competitiveness
of members of its own senior management team plus how the group stacked
up against the competition. Second, the CEO decided the time was approaching
to step down because of an existing, highly productive relationship.
Working directly with the executive team, we developed a series of profiles
identifying the strengths, weaknesses, cultural fit, flexibility, etc.,
of executives from both organizations. At the same time, examining the
talents and abilities of people in with major competitors, thereby providing
a valuable benchmark for the firm's own team. We created plans to strengthen
the leadership skills of already strong managers. We helped define the
role in which each person was most likely to be successful after the departure
of the CEO, and defined the steps and processes likely to facilitate cultural
integration of key executives in a post-merger environment.
Because of our broad business background, we were able to provide guidance
to the executive team regarding the roll-out and communication of the
transition to employees, business partners and the financial community.
This comprehensive succession plan enabled the company to make a crucial
transition smoothly, helped the team members understand their roles in
the ongoing success of the company and maintained the trust and confidence
of the firm's key stakeholders. As a result, this top-to-bottom guidance
paid off in stability in the firm's market value at a time when it could
have been most vulnerable.