Work-life flexibility

With all the discussion and concern about balancing work and life, we found a few things to be true:

  • How a person approaches the intersection of work and life is personal and dynamic.
  • No one approaches their career exactly the same way.
  • No one approaches their family, hobbies, and life in general identically, either.

That is why we focus on flexibility. You should be able to have a fantastic career and a full life and do it in a way that works for you—now, and when you may make changes down the road.

That's why we offer an innovative range of flexible programs that are compatible with career success. In fact, we've been electing partners on flexible schedules, including part-time programs, for years.

For instance, the much-loved Take Time program gives consultants the option to take extra time off between projects. This time can be used to travel the world or stay home with family. You could work on a novel or work on your home. You might get an advanced scuba certification or accompany your spouse on a medical residency.

The Pace program recognizes that people want to advance their career at different speeds, and gives consultants more control over their career trajectory. Pace does this by providing the option for consultants to stay in their current role longer, thus reducing the pressure to fulfill requirements for the next role, while continuing to offer participants the learning, development and professional challenges for which McKinsey is known.

We've spent the past 20 years enhancing our flexibility programs, and creating an environment that is adaptable and accommodating.

How it works

Flexibility counselors offer one-on-one coaching and advice to consultants interested in flexible work arrangements. These counselors can connect you to others who have successfully managed a flexible program similar to what you have in mind.

McKinsey's Flexibility Intranet includes guidance on flexible work models most likely to work in different situations and at varying tenures, formal policies (relating to flexible working, maternity leave, Take Time, and leaves of absence) as well as case examples and video testimonials. It also includes tips and resources on how to work more flexibly with clients and on client teams as well as the McKinsey moms' guidebook which includes tips, advice, and resources specific to maternity leave and flexibility options.

Support for parents

Our commitment to parents has been recognized by Working Mother magazine, which has consistently ranked McKinsey as one of the 100 best companies for working mothers and one of the 10 best for paternity leave. Working Mother specifically recognized us for:

  • extensive leave benefits for mothers, fathers, and adoptive parents
  • coaching and support provided by a dedicated mothers' network manager
  • a phase back option that helps consultants transition back to work after maternity leave

Many offices have a mothers' network with at least one woman partner who provides coaching and advice to consultants as they go on and return from maternity leave.

More on this topic

Take Time scuba diving

Take Time flexibility program

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