“Plan the dive, dive the plan, manage any change” – bringing together two great companies
Garry Dryburgh writes about moving to London from Perth, Australia, 18 months ago, to lead the integration programme, bringing together Amec and Foster Wheeler.
Garry Dryburgh, President, Middle East and Africa
My passion for diving and understanding of making a precision dive, provided me with a framework of how to approach the integration - “plan the dive, dive the plan, manage any change”. I’m pleased to say that, 18 months on, the integration was executed with meticulous care and there was only limited change to manage along the way.
It’s been an exhilarating period from the excitement of Day 1 onwards. The new branding, positive press stories, commemorative coins and welcome booklets, made this a memorable day.
The decisions we took early on in the integration were critical. A major one at our very first integration meeting was to call the deal a combination, rather than an acquisition. This set the tone of how we went forward as a company, bringing together everything that is good about the two formative companies to create a greater whole.
As we celebrate the first anniversary of the combination, we can measure what we’ve achieved and our successes. We are able to do this because early on we identified a set of criteria with 18 detailed key metrics. I am pleased to say that the majority are green with only one red – the latter being a consequence of market conditions and the subsequent reduced investment from oil & gas companies.
Our success has been recognised by our external advisors who described our efforts as “best-in-class”. More importantly, when I meet customers they say to me that the combination was a smart move. They recognise that as a larger company, working in more sectors, we now bring to them an improved offer.
From the outset of the integration this is what we wanted to achieve. The win-win principles and the behaviours we identified as being fundamental to how we operate, resulted in true collaboration. This way of working has grown momentum which I am sure will continue.
I am happy to be wrapping up this successful company programme with key team members, who put their heart and soul into this integration and really proud of what we have achieved.
We have created something great together and set the tone for our future. In the words of the father of scuba diving, Jacques Cousteau: “People protect what they love.”
Meet the blogger
Garry joined Amec Foster Wheeler in 2006 bringing with him 20 years of project, programme and change management experience from the Oil & Gas industry in Europe, North and South America and Asia. Since then Garry has applied his leadership skills to a variety of functional, operational and change management roles. He is now President, Middle East & Africa.
Prior to taking on the Integration Director role for the acquisition of Foster Wheeler, Garry spent three years Australia based as Executive Vice President for Asia-Pacific. In that role his operational responsibilities spanned from Mongolia to New Zealand and across to sub-Saharan Africa including all four of our core Markets.
Garry loves adventure in any free time, whether on his motorcycle or under the ocean waves. In August 2011 he travelled to the deepest point on earth that man had ever been. He was pleased to find that his phone didn’t work there either!
Garry is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors, a Fellow of the Association for Project Management and a registered Chartered Engineer.