PART ONE

April 13, 2019 Critical Thinking

PART ONE: PROPOSAL
A FRAMEWORK FOR ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE FIT AND CORPORATE PERFORMANCE IN MANAGING MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS.

INTRODUCTION
Since the number of organizations seeking to expand globally have found to be successfully through mergers and acquisitions, have created attentions to researchers to deeply seek understanding the relationship between the organizational cultural fit and performance of organizations so as to effectively benefit the acquired company . China being the fast mover and most influential global player with large number of firms investing on foreign companies as mergers & acquisitions as proven its success internationally. According to 2016 report by the Merger-market Group, “China had yearly record for outbound M&A investment with 173 deals worth $128.7 billion in the books. In addition to being numerous, many of China’s takeovers of Western companies have also been huge such that, Chem-China acquired the Swiss pesticide and seed producer Syngenta AG for $43 billion as the largest overseas acquisition by a Chinese company to date. Tencent acquired Supercell, the Finnish mobile game developer, for $8.6 billion. Zhongwang International bought out U.S. aluminum producer Aleris for $2.3 billion. HNA Group purchased Ingram Micro Inc for $6.3 billion. Haier Group paid $5.4 billion for General Electric’s home appliance division.”All these acquisition success have proven a strong culture fit being built by organizations before and after acquisitions.

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The purpose of the project
The General objective of the study is to investigate the possible relationship between organisational cultural fit and corporate performance in mergers and acquisition among Chinese companies along with specific objectives such that examining the impact of organisational cultural fit in mergers and acquisition performance among Chinese companies as well as finding out the challenges of organisational cultural fit in mergers and acquisition performance among Chinese companies Secondly, Investigating the challenges faced by the firms on implementation of the strategies and the risk measures taken on decision process over its competitors . Thirdly, how will the firms being able to create a win-win situation between companies. In addition , point out what impact will it cause to domestic economy of host country companies. Lastly, to find out what precautions to be taken by other foreign firms to develop their capability in international market arena..

An overview of the appropriate literature
Strategies for leveraging cost innovation advantages (Caves and Porter,1978) and a number of additional generic strategies adopted by Chinese companies that can not seen to other countries such as India (Zeng and Williamson,2007).

Research Design
Therefore, in this work the research method will be more explorative approach on qualitative method and multiple case studies to examine how organizational culture fit influencescan strategic interest and relevant data for research will be collected from online and offline sources.

Research questions
Research questions be like:
* What is the relationship between …..

*How does organisational cultural fit have impact on……

*What are the challenges of organisational…..

Literature Review
Methodology: Data collection and analysis, sampling strategy
Access strategy
Ethical issues
Intro & conclusion are a must!
References
PART TWO: QUALITATIVE RESEARCH
“Qualitative research is multi-method in focus, involving an interpretive, naturalistic approach to its subject matter. This means that qualitative researchers study things in their natural settings, attempting to make sense of, or interpret, phenomena in terms of the meanings people bring to them”. Denzin and Lincoln (1994, pg. 2). In qualitative research the researcher gains deep understanding by exploring a problem through obtaining a detailed understanding of a central phenomenon such that to explore the meaning of people, experiences, cultures and a particular issues or case so as to have the literature justify of the problem and play a minor role by providing insight and understanding of the problem at hand
There are several characteristics of qualitative research and methods of collecting data .The purpose of qualitative research is to understand the social settings of individuals, groups and cultures by being fully or partly involved so as to study the participants experiences in their natural settings .Different research approaches can be employed for data collection processes depending on the scope ,time and associated cost of conducting the research such approaches are Ethnography, Grounded Theory, Phenomenology, Case study and narrative approaches. The products of qualitative research are recurrent themes or hypotheses, survey instruments, conceptual model with theories which states the purpose and research questions in general open-ended way. The researchers’ questions following a qualitative approach is exploratory means start with what or how forsake of explaining the phenomenon , behaviour and things operate at that particular context for instance; what are university students experience in trying to eat healthy on campus? or how do student celebrate the global village week around the campus ? then researcher can characterize participants perspective and experience in great depth.

In terms of data collection and data analysis , data are collected from a small number of participants with well developed form of questions about the topic, as well as emergent design more data can be collected in each study in form of words such as interviews, documents like newspapers and journals, observations and audio-visual materials such as video and audio recordings (Dudwick, Kuehnast, Jones and Woolcock, 2006) . Regarding analysis of data , there are rigorous and widely accepted procedures for study design, sampling such as purposive sampling, snowball sampling, sequential sampling, theoretical sampling ,coding such that open coding through developing themes as first step using the data quotes, patterns, comparison studies, and building typologies in qualitative research. Data analysis can be done using text analysis to obtain detailed descriptions in which researchers look through all the data and organise it into themes although all the processes seem to take a lot of time to complete. Researcher as an instrument writes the research report using flexible , evolving and emerging structures and incorporating the researchers’ subjective reflectivity and bias. Qualitative research methods can generate a comprehensive description of processes, mechanism or settings to uniquely contribute to social realities such as health services and social development research.

In conducting qualitative research ,there number of research methods that can be taken into consideration for collecting data but in this piece of work will cover the three methods which are focus group, interview and observation methods and discuss their comparison and difference when applied during research activities.

FOCUS GROUP
Starting with focus group research method, involves group of people interested in a ways people as members of group discuss issues rather than individuals as well as focus on how people respond to each other’s views during the interaction with certain characteristics generate narrative data in a focused discussion exploring potentially sensitive topic, further defined as “a form of group interview in which ; there are several participants in addition to the moderator and facilitator in which there is an emphasis in the questioning on particular fairly tightly defined topic and the accent is upon interaction with the group and the joint construction of meaning” (Bryman,2001).An interview or discussion is carried out by an expert moderator in a natural manner with a small group of respondents, this type of method is very common method particularly in conducting marketing research. Focus group combines group interview as normal interview and focussed interview which involves interviewees selected because they are known to have been involved in a certain situation.”The goal of focus groups is to create conversation that allows participants to explore a topic in depth”. (J.A.Hatch,2002,p.132). Interaction and group dynamics are essential to provide widens range of responses with common experience, activates forgotten details, releases inhibitions by making individual feel comfortable while explaining their experience. Emphasize specific theme-explored in depth and not carried out as a way of saving time since most participants are likely to engage in long topic discussion to gain understanding through sharing and comparing with the rest of the group based on their experience hence consuming time.

Focus group method is applied to people who have same experience or are in the same situation especially in media and cultural studies-audience reception example; research on nationwide television programme presented different groups of people comprised of managers, students ,trades and unionists , had different views on the programmes being shown based on their perceptions and interpretations of what was being presented. (Morely,1980) . To understand why people feels the way they do, allows people to probe each other’s reasons for holdings views, individuals may modify or qualify views after listening to others whereby moderator has to relinquish some of his/her control .This allows interviewees’ views to be challenged by other interviewees, argument produces more realistic accounts as a mutual challenge
Design focus group studies and methodology requires as many as are needed to get a range of views with theoretical saturation (ground theory) when no more variation in views is detected. Comprising of 5 to 10 participants per group so as everyone can have time to participate with number of questions, very few commonly 5or 6 ,sometimes only 2 the fewer the better or 3 to 5 groups per strata to ensure some of each type of respondent, smaller group is better in general so long as small group dynamics each person will say more but forsake of wide range contributions big groups is better though kind expensive to implement .Selection of participants depends on random selection or snow ball methods otherwise those likely to have similar experience or views issues being investigated. But mostly a group of strangers or natural groups having something in common is preferred such as co-workers, friends are very commonly used since those who know each other may operation be taken for granted assumptions, not obvious to facilitator. “Interaction is a key characteristic of focus groups, the idea of individuals assists each other to explore and clarify their point of view, referred as the group effect or groupthink” ( Pranee Liamputtong,2011). Be aware of participants limit time, attentions, language, cultural issues and communication skills to engage in discussion as one of the tasks of the moderator .

Strengths and advantages of the focus group in a primary research gives detailed and indepth discussions of the chosen topic such that Monique M . Hennink, (2007),”incorporated the strength and advantages of focus group into; the social setting ;comfortable and mutual setting of participant enjoying the interaction during discussion, variety of applications and the use of wide range of applications and multi-methods research to gather information from the group environment, then further explained limitations in three headings as skills required, group dynamics, difficult to organise and analyse data such that some materials may not be suitable for discussion within the degree of environment”.

Limitations of focus group is associated with lack of control over discussion (discussion can easily go of topic) group effect may change the direction of discussion sometimes unexpected conflicts may arise in group which may inhibit discussion, need to focus on questions needed by funder. Data is difficult to organise and analyse, may need payment or reward, inappropriate if subject matter causes discomfort to members. Requires a carefully trained moderator or interviewer for it is difficult to manage a group rather than an individual interview.

IN-DEPTH INTERVIEW
As one of the research method can be categorized into structured, semi-structured and unstructured interview but unstructured interview is mostly preferred during research. In-depth interview is a direct personal interview conducted with a small group of respondents to gain insight of the problem or addressing sensitive topic at hand in order to explore individual experiences and perceptions in rich details determined by theoretical saturations whereby when structured survey approaches used do not work. The size varies depending on the complexity of the inquiry cannot be decided in advance and it is open, non-directive in away interviewer may reword questions, drop/add questions and change sequence. Participants will talk candidly only if; feel comfortable in the space, trust the interviewer, feel secure about confidentiality, believe the interviewer is interested in their story, do not feel judged. To overcome all source of issues ethically, participants must be correctly informed about the topic to be discussed, be created a comfortable environment and not being under pressure. All sensitive material or confidential information must be handled with the greatest care and confidentiality. Described by Richie ; Spencer, 1994,analysis of data can be taken through familiarization, identifying a thematic framework, indexing, charting, mapping and interpretation.

OBSERVATIONS
Observations learn about behaviours and interactions in natural settings, study cultural aspects of a setting or particular context by collecting information through direct participation and or by closely watching a group or community this can be addressed as participant observation example sociologists joins group to get accurate sense of how it operates and other way through ethnography which put efforts to describe an entire social focus. Dewalts’ approaches states that “the goal for design of research using participant observation as a method is to develop a holistic understanding of the phenomena under study that is as objective and accurate as possible given the limitations of the method” ( Dewalt & Dewalt, 2002,p.92).There are different senses used in this method of gathering data,the technique that could be used may involve watching and recording actions usually used when the subjects can’t talk or write. this method makes possible the recording of behaviour at the appropriate time and situation. The focus of the observation may involve changes in the attitude, characteristics and behaviour of people being observed. Observational research can be divided into several categories such that naturalistic, participant and laboratory.
Firstly, naturalistic observations observing behaviours in their natural settings, without awareness or any manipulation or intervention, useful in theory development and complex settings associated with limited observer effects by seeing things as they really are presented. Limitations in using this method are explained as cannot be used to study all issues like non-observable process and less useful when studying well -defined hypotheses under precisely specific conditions. Also must constantly reanalyze and revise hypotheses to keep track of the information being processed, the method is to risk to be possibly get caught and being asked to leave.

Second category, participant observations conducted through ” observing behaviours in a natural setting, through active participation in the situation and or manipulation of the environment , careful observation of specific behaviours in a particular settings ,observation of incivility and obesity”(Sliter ; Jex,2010).”Setting through extended systemic observation but its take a long period of time to complete and talk about an entire social setting such that observer gains firsthand knowledge by being in or around the social setting being investigated”( Zikmund ,2000). Additional information “not merely observing what is happening but also feeling it.”(Gill ; Johnson ,2002).Hence, therefore “requires a highly-trained observer to increase validity and reliability (McCuen,1996).There are some difficulties of conducting this method presented as researchers may be biased depending on how they represent the events they observe and observation is made only at the time of occurrence of the appropriate events . Again, observers are not full participants and may affect actions of those being observed with maximum observer effects (Hawthorne effect), in which people change their behaviours whether intentionally or unintentionally to put, them or company in the best light.

Last category, referred as laboratory observations conducted by “observing behaviours in a controlled lab setting, with or without participant’s awareness and or researcher’s involvement”. Therefore, observational study looks at relationships between variables with no researcher control and has no independent variables in order to understand how variables are related which later attend to understand cause and effect relationships in naturally occurring groups.

Strength of Qualitative Research
Qualitative research method is said by researchers to be more rich in information and may be the right choice for conducting research and the best method to study the implicit and explicit behaviours as a powerful tools for social change specially when business operation is involved to explore the views of homogenous as well as diverse groups of people reveal their differing perspectives for the betterment of the community and managing business. “Because social capital is relational it exists between people asking a group of people to respond together to certain questions and hypothetical situations may yield information that is more nuanced than data derived from surveys ” (Dudwick, Kuehnast, Jones & Woolcock, 2006).In order to gain complete concern of an organization, “it is necessary to understand what is driving their behaviour” (Yauch & Steudel, 2003,pg. 472).Other benefit that can be gained is due to open-ended research approaches employed open a room to discuss most serious issues to be taken to consideration sooner or a later. “The qualitative researcher typically does not have a preconceived, finite set of issues to examine” (Yauch & Steudel, 2003,pg 472).

Weakness of Qualitative Research
The drawbacks associated with qualitative research when applied in business studies process is hard to keep track of participants and very expensive in terms of skills required as moderator, observer or coverage cost and time consuming during the process of interview ,and less-able to be generalized, most likely to be surrounded by researcher bias and low response rate when applied with questionnaire method and furthermore threat to reliability when it comes to interviewee perceptions.

REFERENCE
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Silverman, D. (2013) Doing Qualitative Research, 4th edition. London: Sage.Ch 10: 159-186.

Kvale, S. (2009) InterViews, 2nd edition. London: Sage
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Merriam, Sharan B. (1998). Qualitative research and case study applications in education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.

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Angrosino, Michael V. & Mays dePerez, Kimberly A. (2000). Rethinking observation: From method to context. In Norman K. Denzin & Yvonna S. Lincoln (Eds.), Handbook of Qualitative Research (second edition, pp.673-702), Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Holman Jones, Stacy (2004, September). Building connections in qualitative research. Carolyn Ellis and Art Bochner in conversation with Stacy Holman Jones 113 paragraphs. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research On-line Journal, 5(3), Art.28. Available at http://www.qualitative-research.net/fqs-texte/3-04/04-3-28-e.htm April 5, 2005.

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two approaches to focus group data collection for qualitative health research
maximizing resources and data quality rachel flynn, lauren albrecht, shannon d. scottfirst published january 17, 2018 . http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1609406917750781
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