With growing mergers and acquisitions activity in the construction equipment services sector, many readers may at some stage be involved with the challenges of integrating two organizations into a single entity. According to a recent industry analysis by McGladdrey Capital Markets LLC (2011), in 2010 alone there were 287 mergers and acquisitions transactions in the U.S. engineering and construction services and construction material sectors, and 69 more in the first quarter of 2011 alone.

Unfortunately, failed merger attempts are all too common – with some merger plans never even materializing, despite extensive and time-consuming negotiations.

Traditionally, the due diligence process has been the main technique for assessing the business risks associated with a potential merger or acquisition. But the formal, systematic nature of the due diligence procedure places it firmly in the realm of the “science” of mergers and acquisitions, which often neglects the softer, people-related factors that tend to cause initiatives to fail.