*This blog post is an introduction to an article that ran in the 2011 issue of Smart Business Indianapolis.

If you ask Jim, he’ll tell you that getting fired was one of the best things that ever happened to him. It allowed him to regroup, refocus and rebuild ADESA into the company that he always knew it could be. In 2005, he was fired. In 2007, backed by a $3.7 billion deal with private equity investors, he returned to purchase ADESA and once again lead the company he loves. Today, Jim is CEO of KAR Auction Services, the holding company for ADESA, Insurance Auto Auctions and Automotive Finance Corporation.

Here are three highlights from the article that Jim shared when navigating a company acquisition:

  1. Lay the groundwork—know the culture, have a plan, identify your A-players and give them leadership roles.
  1. Spread the culture—forget favoritism, give everyone a voice, level the playing field and limit bureaucracy.
  1. Build the success—listen to your employees, communicate regularly, do what you say you’re going to do, and live the company values every day.

Read the full story from Smart Business Indianapolis here.