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Organisational mergers: a behavioural perspective on identity management

Steffen Giessner

ERIM Inaugural Address Series Research in Management from Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.

Abstract: Organisational mergers are one of the most extreme forms of organisational change processes. Consequently, they often result in difficulties for employees to adjust to the altered organisational conditions. This is often reflected in low levels of employee identification with the post-merger organisation. As a result, merging organisations experience more conflict, less employee motivation, higher turnover and lower performance levels. These low levels of post-merger identification thus often put the strategic and financial goals of the merger at risk. I argue that an organisational behaviour perspective focusing on the management of identity levels during an organisational merger provides important practical insights for employee management. I will first explain why I am personally so fascinated by this topic. I will then present an identity management perspective on organisational mergers. Here, I will consider three key aspects: (1) Identity processes; (2) Intergroup structure; and (3) Leadership. I will conclude by giving an overview of the potential challenges and directions for future research in this field.

Keywords: mergers; acquisitions; esprit de corps; identity management; post-merger identification; social identity; human resource management; employee adjustment; uncertainty (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: G34 L22 M12 M14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 40
Date: 2016-04-01
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-bec, nep-cfn, nep-cse, nep-ind and nep-pke
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