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How Empathy Makes Mergers and Acquisitions Successful

How Empathy Makes Mergers and Acquisitions Successful

An M&A Science Podcast

Hosted by Kison Patel

“Achieving common ground is essential. If you don't have common ground, you don’t have integration.”

On this episode

John DeRusso, director of corporate development integration at Cisco, explains that it is vitally important for the employees of an acquired company to feel understood and comfortable.

While orchestrating m&a integration, DeRusso stresses the value of mitigating employee fear, uncertainty, and doubt. DeRusso suggests that the most successful deals do not associate people solely with cost, rather they see people as the wellspring of innovation.

Throughout the process, John highlights the importance of empathy. If you want to be a successful integration leader, “project yourself into their circumstance and feel what they’re feeling in a genuine way.”

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Show Notes

0:00-0:10 John’s background with Cisco and supply chain

0:13-2:12 Successful acquisitions

2:12-6:42 Retaining people

6:42-9:36 Big picture view of integration

9:36-13:30 Excitement and adrenaline in integration (step-by-step process)

13:30-20:21 Planning considerations, diligence, and key indicators of success

20:21-24:24 Surprises

24:24-30:20 Taking care of customers

30:20-42:19 Complexity, decision-making, and communication

42:19-46:37 Degree of integration (depth and speed)

46:37-52:25 Difficult aspects of integration

52:25-End Lifetime lessons learned and key traits

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