Mergers

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What would be the main training issues following a merger? How might these be addressed, short and long - term?
Hannah Daugaard - Hansen

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20th Apr 2001 11:04

There will probably be many needs including:

1. Aligning company policies, eg

Recruitment and Selection
Competency systems
Performance Appraisal
Discipline and Dismissal
Customer care
Meeting skills

2. People issues, eg

Managing change
Coping with stress
Motivation
Time management

3. Development issues, eg

Competency development
Skill development
Training needs analysis

So it looks like you will have your work cut out!

We do provide consultancy and training in all the above areas and would be delighted to talk with you free of charge to discuss your needs and share our ideas.

Please do ring, with no obligation.

Maggie Mosley
020 8871 5063
[email protected]
www.pmsleurope.co.uk

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20th Apr 2001 11:34

Having witnessed mergers between The Leeds and The Halifax, Lloyds TSB, DfEE and others, I have been struck at how hard it is to gauge the impact on T&D. Cultural issues seem to be the most common theme, which has a big impact on induction, management and interpersonal skills training in particular. The mechanics of the business obviously affects the more practical and business orientated training. The IT system(s) being a particularly problematic area in my experience.

However, there is an added dimension just below the surface of your question. That is around how you merge the two training teams, their methods, their philosophies and their strengths. Most of management's attention tends to go in to the logistical issues, such as which training centre survives, how many trainers are needed and which courses should be dropped. But training is part of the corporate glue. If you do not get the training teams to merge their cultures quickly and positively it is hard for training to play its full part in creating a new culture for the rest of the organisation. And if the trainers are not at the forefront of any practical changes - such as the IT system - it is hard for them to provide the tools to do the job to the rest of the staff.

Often left to later in the day are the development methods of mentoring, coaching and open learning. The T&D team have a key role to play in facilitating the use of these methods. Increasingly e-learning is available to help in supporting change processes. It is hard for mentors to give the right steer on culture unless they are given a clear steer themselves. For these and other development methods, trainers need to act swiftly to get all the messages out to staff - cultural and practical.

Maggie Mosley's message covers the content areas already so I will just say that I agree with her whole-heartedly.

Graham

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23rd Apr 2001 15:15

Hannah

I agree with your other two respondents!

The biggest single issue in the end is developing a shared culture and objectives. And this is NOT very easy!!

In our consultancy practice, we tend to focus on agreeing a shared strategy (mission, vision, values etc) with a model we have developed for this; new Competency Mapping (the preferred perosnal skills, qualities and behaviours that will exemplify outstanding performance in the new world, through Critical Incident Analysis, Repertory Grid etc; and sensitive, validated, personality profiling (on the basis that people often get hired for what they know and fired for how they behave!); and confidential 1:1 coaching for the new Leaders and Senior Managers....

We also like to run workshops on the Grief of Change, understanding Personality, Behaviour and Attitudes, which you can/should manage and which you just need to understand... These don't just bring teams together with a shared experience, but also provide a common language for discussing and understanding these softer issues - which are critical.

I hope this helps? Good luck!

Jeremy Thorn
Chairman - QED
Doncaster, UK
www.qedconsulting.co.uk
Tel: +44 3102 761222

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27th Apr 2001 18:44

We agree with the other respondants and are particularly in agreement with the one just below. In our experience a complete change of culture across all of the merger bodies is by far the best route to follow. Enlisting input from those involved will ensure a more committed outcome and an easier time for all concerned. Use the principle of democratic management and invite their input - it works.
Good luck !

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