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Change Management: Raising the Bar

Sample Client Issue:
Merger Integration

Corlund was retained by a very successful regional healthcare system to facilitate the launch of an affiliation with a neighboring hospital and a new combined leadership and governance structure. At the time, discussions had been underway for two years, but progress was blocked by lack of agreement on which CEO should lead the new enterprise. Corlund was retained initially to define the competencies required in the new system CEO position and to assess the two CEO candidates, with feedback to the combined board so they could make a selection and get on with finalizing the affiliation agreement. Through those discussions, it became clear to the boards that there were trust issues that could prevent them from reaching agreement at all. As a result, Corlund worked with the two boards to build trust and to help create a shared vision and values that would represent the governance foundation for the new entity while expediting relationship negotiations. The affiliation has gone forward and is fulfilling its vision and its potential.


A global financial services corporation was completing its largest North American acquisition ever through the purchase of a large company active in adjacent market segments. The integration process had to happen quickly between two companies whose cultures were very different. In this situation, staffing decisions for the merged enterprise had to happen quickly while ensuring that the best qualified and most capable people were placed in the right jobs using a process that would be perceived as fair. If designed properly, the staffing process could also seed an organizational development process that would jump start the new leadership team on planning for culture change.

A specialty chemicals company acquired another related business that was two thirds its size. The acquirer had a culture oriented to strong financial controls while the acquired company was oriented to investing in customer relationships and marketing activities. Neither company had ever participated in the integration of two organizations so large and so distinct in their cultures. The integration process was encountering bumps, so the CEO sought a diagnosis of where the pressure points were and what was going wrong in the integration process; in addition, he sought recommendations for smoothing and accelerating the integration in ways that would increase the odds of achieving the required return on the acquisition costs.

The sale of a medical products business from an entrepreneurial venture to a large corporate parent offered significant promise for marketplace and financial impact. To accelerate the integration, the CEO brought his newly named executive team -- including representatives of both organizations -- together with professional facilitators to create a shared vision and values for the new enterprise and to determine how they would work together to make the most of their "marriage."

When one of the world's largest oil companies acquired a moderate-sized polyolefins producer, the North American business redesigned its structure to incorporate both entities. Customer research and market dynamics were used as the foundation for sorting through both strategic and cultural differences and creating a new entity that could outperform its competitors.

A mid-sized niche technology business was preparing to grow dramatically through acquisitions in the U.S. and Europe. The CEO sought an assessment of his executive team to determine whether they had the skills and experience to integrate those acquisitions smoothly and to capitalize on potential market and cost synergies.

The president of a water treatment business found himself faced with a major structural decision as he combined two regional business -- one with a commodity dynamics and the other with value-added characteristics -- into a global structure. Instead of making those decisions alone, he brought together the two management teams and charged them -- working with professional facilitators -- with creating a unified global strategy and a structural concept for the unified company.

Related Client Issues:
Organizational and Cultural Change
Driving Strategy Implementation

Back to Index of Client Issues


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