Agile M&A

M&A management framework designed for flexibility, adaptability, and continuous improvement.

What is Agile M&A?

To remain competitive in a rapidly changing landscape of growing market pressures, high transaction values, and increasing information density, it is imperative that practitioners approach M&A in a more innovative, efficient, and collaborative way.
Agile M&A was created in response to these changes; it is a management framework that was developed based on Agile principles. It incorporates lessons from experienced practitioners to create a model tailored to the specific needs of an evolving industry.
At its core, Agile M&A is culture and change-oriented. It was made to be transformable and molded to the specific needs of each organization. It encourages leaders to identify inefficiencies and provides practices to overcome them.

What does
Agile M&A look like?

Agile M&A is comprised of five main components: strategic management, program management, team management, game plan and plays, and core values and principles.

Strategic Management

Strategic management involves leadership defining the acquisition strategy. This acquisition strategy will provide you with a way to ground your deal decision. 

Having a clear acquisition strategy means each deal made is done in alignment with the overall strategy. When acquisitions are done meaningfully, they are more likely to lead to success. 

Find out more about 7 steps of developing acquisition strategy.

Program Management

Program management means restructuring your approach to the deal cycle. Being able to respond to unexpected changes during diligence and integration can increase the likelihood of long-term success. 

An Agile approach involves due diligence and integration planning to run parallel. This allows cultural diligence and talent assessment to be performed before closing which encourages value retention. 

Post-close, integration execution and change management will also run parallel. This not only shortens the duration but reduces cost.

Team Management

Team management involves building a system and culture of open communication, flexibility, and adaptability. This involves gathering and training your team on Agile methodology and your relevant tech stack.

Main steps:
1. Kickoff, Assemble, and Train
2. Team Establish Tools and Work
3. FlowPlan and Prioritize
4. Work Execute, Validate, Refine
5. Closure

Game Plan & Plays

Game plans are at the core of Agile M&A methodology. Plays allow practitioners to share techniques to overcome challenges. 

Your game plan acts as an operating system that defines how your team is structured, conducts meetings, shares information, and manages dependencies.

Same plans consist of plays, or short bursts of work. Each play acts as a strategy or approach to due diligence, integration, sourcing, and more. 

Within each play, key people are outlined and basic steps are provided to help teams achieve a specific goal.

Explore a few sample game plans here.

Core Values and Principles

Culture-oriented organizations all have clearly defined core values. Leadership teams adopting Agile need to become “culture freaks”. 

All leadership decisions need to be structured around these core values and principles. Especially when strategizing around deals, these core values work as anchors to ensure each decision is made with the “big picture” in mind.

How do I get started?

Start by assessing your current practice and working with your team to define core values and principles.
Interview team members to discover pain points, and map out related plays.
Research and develop a strong tech stack with the right tools to support your team
Try it out during a deal! Keep communication channels open. Continue to be retrospective, identify pain points, and make improvements.