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McKinsey Organization Blog

Short and snackable insights on talent management, organizational design, agility, culture, change management, HR analytics and technology, leadership, and merger management from our experienced partners at the forefront of today’s trends.

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Emerging faster and stronger – organizing to win the upturn

Despite the salient pain-points brought about by our current crisis, many organizations – in their shift to “survival minimum” mode in recent weeks – have experienced significant leaps in speed, flexibility, and resilience in their ways of working. One grocery retailer, for example, launched a curbside pick-up and delivery business in two days – a far cry from its legacy plan of 18-months. Upon reflection, the group’s CEO had a bold and challenging ...

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Organizing for the Future: A focus on three outcomes

In a recent post, we framed the moment we are living in as a first true information revolution – one driven by more connection, lower transaction costs, unprecedented automation, and demographic shifts. This paradigm shift radically changes the business agenda for the winners of the previous industrial revolutions. Take car manufacturers, for example: in the past five years, their agenda has gone from “Where should we locate plants?” to “How do we build electric ...

Organizing for the Future: Why now?

In business today, we’re seeing a story unfold before our eyes, one that has happened before but not in our lifetime. When technologies converge, industries transform, and work is remade. Since the 18th century, at least three industrial revolutions have occurred. Organizations evolved—or closed. Predictability became king. Scale mattered. For the innovators, productivity soared. The fundamental challenge now is that even the most successful companies today are designed to operate by ...

How to communicate effectively in times of uncertainty

During a crisis, an employee’s most trusted source of information is often their employer. For this reason, a leader’s words and actions can have a major impact on the well-being of those they manage; they can help keep people safe, help them adjust and cope emotionally and help them put their experience into context and draw meaning from it. But crises also present leaders with infinitely complicated challenges and no easy answers. Tough trade-offs abound, and with them, tough ...

How to make smart decisions quickly in uncertain times

Making good, fast decisions is challenging under the best of circumstances. But during a crisis of uncertainty, organizations often face a potentially paralyzing volume of unfamiliar, high-stakes decisions. The typical approach–postponing these “big-bet” decisions to wait for more information–will be far too slow to keep up. In fact, waiting to decide is a decision in itself. To ensure quick, bold decision-making during uncertain times, follow these five principles. ...