Capturing M&A Value Through People

Isely Associates works with leaders of organizations growing by merger, acquisition or similar business transactions to anticipate and manage their people-related deal risks.
Want To 20X Your Odds of Deal Success?

Don't Underestimate the Impact of People Experience on Your Deal

Our latest global research reveals that meeting M&A deal objectives is up to 23 times more likely when people have a positive experience than when their experience is negative.

M&A Strategy

Positive people experience is 3.5 to 4 times more likely when Clarity is not seen as something that went wrong or as a challenge.

M&A Leadership

Positive people experience is 3 to 5.6 times more likely when Leadership is not seen as a challenge or something that went wrong.

Culture Integration

Culture poses the greatest challenge, and is mentioned as a concern 15% less frequently in deals where people experience is positive.

Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory

Check Out Our Latest Research

In this research we explore the relationship between M&A deal outcomes and the personal experiences of business leaders and employees working and living through mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and other scenarios where businesseses are joined together or taken apart. We test the hypothesis that when people have a positive deal experience, deal objectives are more likely to be met than when people have a negative experience.

198 Deals I 60% Cross-Border I All Deal Types and Perspectives I Major Industries Covered

Why Mergers and Acquisitions Fail

Most mergers and acquisitions fail to meet stated objectives. Deals fail due to (mostly) predictable reasons – and most reasons have to do with human beings and emotion, not strategy, logic or process. Every deal is different, but the pattern of what goes wrong is similar:

  • Personal concerns thwart productivity, impair judgment, influence behaviour, destroy credibility and endanger wellbeing 
  • Blind spots are a killer – often executives “don’t know what they don’t know” and the capability gap is discovered too late to remedy it without consequence
  • And when human beings have a terrible M&A experience, an organization’s greatest asset quickly becomes it’s greatest liability.

Planning ahead to invest in leadership and culture capability well before deal time pays dividends many times over.

Why Work With Us?

Typical things that go wrong can be traced back to human factors. Time and again, acquirers underestimate the time, complexity, and cost of getting human beings to do what needs to be done, and generally leave it too late to address these patterns effectively.

A merger changes everything. Disruptive and often dramatic, these events can be a catalyst for significant change, whether on the “buy side” or “sell side”. The future rarely remains the same for anyone touched, regardless of role or position. Do you know how you will be impacted?

Pivotal career moments for senior executives, mergers bring either kudos and professional advancement, or the harsh reality of having to reinvent. How you and your team fare depends on how well you prepare and take charge, whatever transpires.

Productivity is always at risk in anticipation of a merger, during deal execution and right through implementation. Early attention to people experience and culture risk matters if your business leaders expect to create, rather than destroy, value.

Navigating an M&A transaction requires specific skills that come only with deliberate action. Optimal outcomes happen only in an environment where leaders and team members can make their most effective contribution. The stakes are too high to “learn as you go”!

Keeping focus on what really matters is hard. Research and experience show that even executives with significant M&A experience, and a successful track record, report they could have improved outcomes by placing more and earlier emphasis on the human aspects of deals.

The cost of playing catch up is significant. Seasoned dealmakers focus first and foremost on clarity. They invest to build leadership, culture management and execution capability well before deal time. Having a well-prepared “go to” team is essential to maximise M&A deal value captured.

How prepared are you for the M&A challenges ahead?

Executives who don’t identify and address their M&A blindspots - especially around Clarity, Leadership and Culture - risk their professional reputations. The downside of not meeting deal commitments will impact colleagues, clients and your business as a whole.

We’re Here to Support Your Executive Team and Deal Leaders

We have a unique way of working with business leaders and deal teams to provide them with the framework, knowledge, tools and support to deliver expected deal value, and at the same time create a positive work environment that extends well beyond the deal. 

The psychology of leadership and performance in mergers fascinates us – because there is so much at stake. Rarely is there a time that senior leaders have to put everything on the line in a complex environment, where they may not have done it before. It is a rare privilege to do work that matters on both a commercial and personal level for businesses, leaders and employees alike. 

Whether you are preparing for an expected merger, or picking up the pieces from an acquisition that hasn’t gone to plan, don’t go it alone. Tap our expertise – we’ve been where you are going – or draw on our network for additional experienced resources.

Our Research Inspires Our Method

M&A Deal Ready Method

M&A Fundamentals

Clarity and People Experience predict Deal Outcomes

Clarity and Leadership predict People Experience

Culture is perceived to be the greatest challenge

Capability and Execution are foundational

Get Insight

Know where you stand
so you know what to do…

Amplify Essentials

Focus on essentials to 20X your odds of meeting deal objectives…

Fix Foundation

Fill obvious gaps
to secure table stakes…

What Our Clients Say

Articles and Posts

Expand your M&A knowledge.

Why M&A Deals (Still) Fail

Some hints: Strategy usually is not the problem; sometimes financial projections don’t include important considerations; and almost always it’s execution that falls short. At the start of a recent research…
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How to Start

Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory
Download Our Latest Research

Meeting deal objectives is up to 23X more likely when people have a positive deal experience than when their experience is negative. 

Download Essentials for Merger Success Report.

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Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory
Join M&A Essentials Briefing

On the second Thursday of each month Karen delivers an M&A Essentials Briefing based on her global research. 

Concerned about meeting deal objectives? Invest an hour and discover how to improve your odds! 

You're a step closer to joining our 'Second Thursday' M&A Essentials Session.

Complete the form below to join our next ‘Second Thursday’ M&A Essentials Session.

Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory
Complete M&A Preparation Assessment

The first step towards knowing what to do is to know where you stand. 

Take ten minutes to complete this online assessment and request a Preparation Snapshot Debrief call.

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