Each acquisition and integration is unique and has its own set of complexities and challenges. Mistakes will be made along the way, up-front assumptions will turn out to be inaccurate, and cultures and roles will inevitably clash. We all know the old saying, “Hindsight is 20-20.” When it comes to an acquisition and integration effort, a look back can provide great insight into what went well, what didn’t go well, and what should be done differently the next time.

For organizations that intend to remain active in acquisitions, a hindsight look before the acquisition is completed can be extremely beneficial. The effort needn’t be long-term; but for it to be efficient and effective, it should be structured, focused and well-organized. When we ask our clients to look retrospectively at an acquisition, we typically take the following approach:

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