The aim of this research is to study the development and activation of existing dynamic capabilities in a new situation in form of a merger & acquisition change process. There already exists research about the development or activation of dynamic capabilities. However, more attention on the development of existing dynamic capabilities is needed. The research will address the research gap of the development of existing dynamic capabilities with the goal to answer this research question: “How are existing dynamic capabilities activated or developed in a new merger & acquisition change process?”
In answering this question, the research methodology is built on a case study of the company WLA who has recently managed a change process, because the organization had partly acquired by the company RODAS. This qualitative research method includes 20 conducted interviews and additionally secondary data was used to provide fully valid outcomes. The collected data was analysed using the qualitative content analysis developed by Mayring and additionally categorized according to the Gioia Research Methodology.
The research findings show that in this new situation of a merger & acquisition change process the organization WLA had a change in its organizational strategy and its corporate culture. The mechanisms for developing and activating existing dynamic capabilities to handle this change are on the one hand continuous learning, which includes learning from others, learning from own mistakes and learning from previous change processes and on the other hand pressure. However, the research findings also show that the organization WLA shows stability in its main processes including the HR and the sales and the mechanism for this stability are experience of the organization and knowing the companys limitations. In doing so, the organization WLA was able to overcome the new situation with which it had to deal with through the merger and acquisition change process. Afterwards several theoretical and managerial implications are discussed and also limitations and research gaps for further studies are given.