Merger and Unit Integration Issues
As a leader/manager, one circumstance you may encounter is the necessity to integrate or merge two organizational units. This can be a stressful period which, if not properly managed, can cause a good deal of tension and/or conflict, often leading to decreased organizational performance.
Consider that senior management has dictated that your unit will merge with another manager’s unit over the next three months. You will be the leader of the newly merged group. The previous manager will remain on your staff. Senior management has asked you to submit a merger plan. (If you have previously been involved in an actual unit merger, please share the organizational dynamics you experienced as well as any lessons learned.)
(Bring in and cite at least one source of information from your background readings for each of your weekly initial posts.)
Week 1 Discussion Question:
What are the key issues/challenges/opportunities you face, both short- and long-term?
Remember, after you submit your answer each week to the Discussion Question itself, you also need to respond to at least two of your classmates’ posts.
Classmate #1 Post
Great news when it comes to merging groups. There will be more people unhappy than there are people who are happy. There will be conflict so be ready to come up with a plan for resolution or reassignment. In the military we are always merging and moving around to different groups and teams. We were on a deployment and the amount of staff we had was short. We offered monetary incentives for the organization leaving to keep a few staff members behind. The staff members that remained behind thought it was going to be an easy ride as they were senior on the equipment.
They assumed that coming to work late, and not doing any work was acceptable. There were bigger problems at our hands than a few people who wanted to get by easy. We had to use the most swift approach possible in the situation we were in. We use a very direct approach as in do what you are told and do it now, because we had a combination of both coercive and legitimate power (Brighton School of Business and Management, 2014).
There’s not a lot of wiggle room to go against the entire organization without remedy or punishment. The combat mindset, it’s great we adjusted and it was resolved swiftly. However, the long 7 month deployment the staff was not motivated. They would do the bare minimum and not go beyond as they felt discouraged. Over time they were burnt out and even if they wanted to do a great job it was challenging.
Knowing what I know now I would have used a more inspired approach asking and sharing my concern in a win-win situation. We should have used a more relationship orientated approach (Eveland, n.d.). That would have got everybody happier and gone further. The other approach we could have used is the buy-in from all stakeholders by sharing the problem and coming up with potential solutions (Vroom-Yetton-Jago, n.d.).
Brighton School of Business and Management (2014, July 22) French and Raven’s five forms of power. Retrieved from
Eveland, J. D. (n.d.) Leadership. Retrieved from https://tlc.trident.edu/content/enforced/92419-MGT501-JUL2017FT-1/Leadership.ppt?_&d2lSessionVal=q2UGfjWB3SSwzvCVEwiede8vZ&ou=92419
Vroom-Yetton-Jago (n.d.) Vroom-Yetton-Jago decision-making model of leadership. Retrieved from http://www.leadership-central.com/Vroom-Yetton-Jago-decision-making-model-of-leadership.html#axzz3OjpF9lI8
Classmate # 2 Post
In being chosen to lead the newly merged group, one key issue I would face is the previous manager remaining on my staff. One thing to consider with this is the possibility of the other manager being envious, jealous, or frustrated because they I was chosen to lead. Another key issue to consider is the reaction of employees from both organizational units. Another key issue would be successfully getting the two organizational units to work together and still be productive.
Being a leader means convincing people to do something that is out of their norm or something they wouldn’t do on their own. Each one would need motivation that is specific to their own independent behaviors and personalities and require different reactions. These reactions include commitment, compliance, and resistance.
Commitment is where the leader provides goals and expectations and the employees will act according to the requests of the leader and will often go above and beyond the requests. Compliance is where the employee does what is asked but does nothing more. Resistance is where the employee does not follow the requests of the leader.
These are all things that need to be determined when carrying out this merger and taking on the leadership role for the new unit. This leadership brings along power which is what causes the reactions listed. I would consider the reactions to the 5 types of power needed to become the leader over this new unit. The 5 types of power are reward, coercive, legitimate, referent, and expert.
Compliance will be more common reactive toward Reward and Legitimate. Commitment will be more common reactive for Referent and Expert. Coercive power/leadership causes a compliance or resistance reaction. (French and Raven’s…).
In order to take on this merger, it is important to consider which employees will react through compliance, commitment, or resistance and then determine they type of power that I will need to direct each of those reactions effectively. Each of the power types will most likely need to be used because the three reactions will be used in some form with all employees involved.
French and Raven’s Five Forms of Power. Retrieved April 2017 from
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