M&A: Overcoming the Culture Shift Challenge

When I wrote the “Mentoring by FabMob” white paper, I was already hinting at an example of use of mentoring to facilitate the cultural integration in the case of acquisition of a new entity. I do not wish to go into the well documented difficulties that large companies face when they are merging or acquiring, how people issues come into play, and how the integration of different ways of working, thinking, communicating can put a real spanner in the works. Even though we all know it is a challenge, still very little M&A really work on the cultural aspect, and very little use mentoring as a tool for creating real human connections for a faster blend of cultures. 

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What it takes to build a mentoring culture that delivers

Worldline has been one of the key customers I’ve been implementing a company-wide strategic mentoring program (you will spot me here and there presenting, gesticulating and laughing in the short video). During the last four years, I’ve been starting up, designing, implementing, training, tweaking, measuring and evolving their mentoring programme to attain specific strategic goals (that I won’t disclose obviously, but you can Google what they’ve been up to since 2014 and have some idea).

As consultants working on the strategic side of things (culture is about strategy) we can’t share much of what we are doing internally. That’s probably the only frustrating part of our job really. If Worldline chose not to communicate that much on this program up to until now, it’s evidently because it was not just a PR « feel-good » operation. That being said, now that the program is really mature and has delivered enough Worldline decided to share a few things about it.

As such, I can also open up a bit on what the key to their success at making mentoring a strategic tool, not just a feel-good operation:

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Fin novembre, le temps de la réflexion

Comme toutes les années Stéphanie et moi prenons cinq à six jours pour faire une pause de fin d’année et faire le point sur l’année presque terminée, sur ce que nous avons apporté à nos clients, ce que nous avons essayé mais qui c’est révélé être infructueux ou trop long à démarrer et nos futurs projets. L’avantage de travailler en couple est que l’on peut créer une ou deux fois dans l’année cet espace un peu particulier entre les loisirs et le travail. Cette bulle permet d’adopter un rythme libre entre les loisirs et la réflexion, celle-ci étant limitée à des moments où nous en avons envie et où elle peut donc être efficace. Continue reading Fin novembre, le temps de la réflexion