Agile M&A

Agile M&A offers an innovative approach to one of the most challenging issues faced by mergers and acquisition project in the world today — disjointed, inefficient, obsolete processes that result in costly delays, failed projects and unrealized gains. When complemented by simple, intuitive tech tools, an Agile M&A process significantly improve the probability to successful deal closure.

What is Agile M&A?

Developed originally by software developers to create a more efficient, client-driven process, the Agile project management methodology is now successfully utilized by many, varying industries to spur productivity and collaboration.

However, the financial industry largely still relies on traditional management approaches, such as Waterfall, first designed to support predictable processes like manufacturing and construction. These traditional approaches benefit programmatic, predictable operations and fail to deliver adequate value in the highly dynamic and ever-changing environment of M&A.

At its core, Agile is a problem-solving mindset—a way of conceptualizing and responding to constantly-changing environments—which values spontaneity, creativity, and swift reaction to novel situations over established procedure, itemization, and static workflow. Agile is adaptive instead of predictive, iterative instead of sequential, and flexible instead of rigid.

In M&A, the needs of every deal are unique. Adopting a traditional, programmatic project management style is likely to lead to duplicate work, lost information, procedural bottlenecks, and limited cross-functional visibility. Approaching M&A with an Agile strategy allows team members to react quickly to emergent conditions.

The Agile M&A Manifesto

Adapted from the 2001 Agile Manifesto for software development, the Agile M&A Manifesto is intended to encourage a new way of thinking and working within the M&A context and with software M&A. These five core principles represent the essence of Agile M&A, and are intended to empower professionals to change the way they collaborate and achieve common goals:
  1. Individuals and interactions ​over processes and tools
  2. Meaningful progress ​over comprehensive documentation
  3. Real-time collaboration ​over batch work
  4. Responding to change ​over following a pla
  5. Transparency ​over implicit assumptions

The Agile M&A Process Model

Guided by the principles of the Agile M&A manifesto, the Agile M&A process provides a tactical approach for planning and executing work while fostering a highly-collaborative, transparent, and constantly-improving team dynamic. This simple, intuitive, yet powerful approach allows teams to focus their efforts on completing critical tasks in pursuit of a timely and effective closing.
The Agile approach to M&A relies on a simple model that enables efficient utilization of team resources as well as built-in feedback loops. This approach can be applied incrementally over time.