Mitchell Lee Marks and Philip H. Mirvis, who separately and together have worked on more than 50 major corporate "marriages," offer a useful distillation of the myriad lessons they've learned about this vital and increasingly common business activity in Joining Forces: Making One Plus One Equal Three in Mergers, Acquisitions, and Alliances. By examining their own projects, along with various other winners and losers, they've identified a number of specifics that can help ensure that such combinations ultimately succeed. Included are details on preparation, managing transition, minimizing stress, and developing an entirely new culture. From Publishers Weekly The "one plus one equal three" of the subtitle is the authors' way of signaling that they are focusing here on business combinations that aim to "build some strength or capacity greater than that present in the partners as independent organizations." Marks (From Turmoil to Triumph) and Mirvis (coauthor of Managing the Merger), both management consultants, cover the basics of preparing for a successful combination of businesses in the form of a merger, acquisition or alliance. In their straightforward approach, they discuss the need for due diligence at the outset, and they explain that there must be a lot of psychological work to communicate clearly what is going on to all concerned and to ensure that the companies joining forces can peacefully coexist. Why the need for such careful planning? Because, the authors point out, "more than three quarters of corporate combinations fail to attain projected business results." Succeeding parts of the book take readers through the steps of building a new culture for the combined organizations and reaping the rewards of the union. This insightful guide should aid all managers involved in joining forces.