Step 3: Conduct M&A Integration Management Office (IMO) Kickoff Meeting

After executives agree on key issues (Step 1), and the rules regarding governance are determined (Step 2), the next step is to conduct a joint IMO kick off management meeting attended by steering committee, the core IMO Team, the work stream leaders, and deal team. 

At this meeting, attendees learn about the:

  • rationale for the deal
  • integration’s objectives
  • non-negotiables
  • core messages to be communicated
  • synergy targets
  • end state vision
  • governance structure
  • pre-close rules of engagement
  • planning and charter templates they will use
  • integration methodology that will be followed
  • integration process and how it will unfold

PRITCHETT consultants often lead and facilitate this meeting for our clients. We level set everyone with the same information. This orientation is very empowering to the workstream team leads because they are provided the information they need to start building their plans. This is probably the most consequential integration meeting you will have during the integration because you are laying the necessary groundwork for all the activities that follow.

The teams also begin to develop/edit their charters at the kickoff.  A charter specifies the purpose, deliverables, success criteria, budget, and schedule for a team. It is a simple document designed to clearly outline the “who, what, and how” elements of an integration and gain commitments from resource owners in advance. The boundaries for integration work should be clearly defined in an integration team charter so the overlap of responsibilities is minimized and efficient coordination among functions is fostered.

This section of our web site includes several integration presentations to help onboard and mobilize your teams. Plus additional documents on how to create a charter including case study exercises for HR, sales, product development, and information technology. 

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