Organisational mergers: A behavioural perspective on identity management



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 organizational 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.

“For the livestream of the inaugural address starting at 15:25 on 1 April click here.”