Combining Cultures After an Acquisition: Manufacturing

Helping Leaders to Merge Two Cultures to Succeed

Client Case Study

Situation

One of the biggest investment banking firms in the United States purchased two food-manufacturing companies, both market leaders in their primary product lines.  Two food-manufacturing companies, both market leaders in their primary product lines, were purchased. The two legacy companies had enjoyed the relative protection of being moderate size divisions of multi-billion dollar enterprises.

Now they were challenged as a stand-alone mid-size global company.

Complications

  • The new company had to deal with two very different cultural legacies, new competitive threats, a global recession, and fiscal constraints.
  • Furthermore, one year after the creation of the company, the CEO was replaced and the synergies expected from the combined companies had yet to be realized.

Approach

  1. Engaged by the newly hired CEO to create a blueprint for implementing the new strategy and product-line structure.
  2. This included a plan for leveraging the strengths of the combined cultures in order to capitalize on market opportunities.
  3. The new leadership team required development and alignment to produce strong direction.

Approach (cont)

4.  The plan included

  • Conducting an organizational analysis and culture survey to provide a common understanding of the challenges
  • Designing and facilitating a large group event with the top 100 leaders from around the world to accelerate the move toward a unified vision, strategy, and values upon which decisions and actions would emanate.
  • Galvanizing leadership into focused actions.

Results

  • Executive stewardship including accountability dramatically improved.
  • Business directors now have the charter and market focus to capitalize on product development synergies.
  • Business results, even in a recession, have been markedly improved.

Related Information

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Natalie McCullough
Chief Marketing & Strategy Officer

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Having taken on a new executive leadership role, one of my first calls was to LSA Global to help my leadership team to design, implement, and cascade clear strategic plans.  First, LSA helped our leadership team identify the strategy, culture, and talent areas that mattered most to create organizational alignment.

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Erik Arvesen
Vice President, General Manager

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Thank you for a great leadership development session today. The facilitator was brilliant.  The team got a lot out of it (as did I).

I believe it will help us create an even higher performance culture by ensuring we have a common understanding of how to create higher performance and work toward clear and common strategic goals.

Simon Jefferson
Managing Director

AKQA

As a high growth agency with cutting edge talent, we hired LSA Global to help clarify our strategy and work with our executive leadership team to help implement strategic changes in a way that made sense for our unique culture.

The work was so successful that we also hired them to coach our key leaders. LSA has been instrumental in helping us transition to a new leadership team and triple revenue.  In this age of useless consultants, I highly recommend their practical and business-oriented approach to strategy, culture, and talent.

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We consider LSA our true business partner.

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I recommend them to anyone looking for a practical approach to drive true business and people results.

Michelle A. Mitchell
Vice President, Worldwide Human Resources

LSA was very thorough during all phases of our customer service strategy process.  Their time spent with management and our employees went very well.

LSA’s insights were very powerful, and their suggestions for the future were very valuable.

I can’t think of any phase of the process that wasn’t first class.

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LSA Global really shifted our perspective about strategic clarity and organizational culture.

The 3 C’s approach to workplace culture is very practical and really helps  executive teams – even skeptical ones – ensure that your culture is healthy, high performing, and aligned.

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The strategy and alignment work with our leadership team was absolutely transformational.  The decisions we made combined with the transparency, communication, and accountability were exactly what we needed.  Thank you!

Dr. Raphael B. Merriman M.D
Medical Director, Liver Transplantation

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LSA worked with our Executive Leadership Team to help create strategic clarity and alignment as we look to increase our growth rate and unlock innovation.  They masterfully handled very complex, challenging, and high stakes leaders, decisions, and cultural nuances to help us identify what matters most and move toward one unified direction.

Their practical, straightforward, and client-centric approach was refreshing.  I highly recommend them to any executive team looking to get aligned to create even higher performance.  They are lights out awesome!

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Chief Financial Officer, Partner

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We recently hired LSA to help us take our client delivery methodology to the next level as we continue to grow and help our clients succeed.

The custom strategy and design session exceeded our expectations. They really understood our business and delivered within tight time frames. They were the best I have seen for this type of complex, visible, and strategic work.

LSA’s ability to get a group of 20+ executives from around the globe on the same page, push their thinking to new heights, and ensure an executable plan was excellent.

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Rob Sturgeon
EVP Client Delivery

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LSA’s action-learning leadership approach has been very beneficial to me, our leadership team, and the entire organization.

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We have made huge progress, and I was also able to identify 2-3 high potentials while having the extra benefit of people stepping up to carry key strategic projects forward.

The experience was better than anticipated.  I could not be more pleased.

Heather Feltman
President & CEO

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Having tripled in size and recently merged, LSA helped our executive team to increase our level of strategic alignment, to solidify our new direction, and to push our agency forward.

As we look to rapidly scale, the clear, actionable, and critical few strategic moves combined with how we differentiate ourselves to our top accounts and target clients has really set us on a great path to success.

This is exactly what we needed to get to the next level. Thank you LSA!

Matt Britton
CEO

At a time of change in our marketplace, LSA Global did an exceptional job helping our executive team create strategic clarity by helping us to define, clarify, and prioritize our corporate vision, mission, values, differentiation, target clients, strategic priorities, success metrics and key roles.

They beautifully navigated a very difficult and fuzzy situation, respectfully cleared out all of the cultural elephants, and shared impactful insights and leadership development theories along the way. They have transformed our business.

Laurie Sewell
President & CEO

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LSA’s executive coach based his approach on understanding our business circumstances and strategy, as well as our leadership aspirations. The customized coaching covered all aspects of leadership; it was not simply a touchy-feely endeavor.

In fact, the focus on clear business outcomes and real life circumstances challenged me as a senior leader to develop my thinking and actions related to leading the business.”

Janet Pagano
Managing Director

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We selected LSA Global over 5 other companies to help our key executives improve their overall communication and executive presentation capabilities. LSA exceeded our expectations.

I highly recommend LSA to any executive team looking to better organize and more effectively deliver key executive-level messages — especially when the stakes are high.

Todd Power
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