The emphasis I have given to the human dimension of the acquisition separates this book from others you might read about M&A. Let me balance that with an equal and opposite emphasis on system. The reactive character of the “old way” means that M&A transactions are often alarmingly haphazard. One specific reason is that the process involves several different experts who traditionally show up at different stages along the road, like cameo performers in a soap opera. This is a recipe for fragmentation.

I believe passionately in a highly structured and disciplined approach to acquisition, always beginning with a Growth Program Review. There are steps to take in the right way and in the right sequence. If you skip any one of ...

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