Back to Our Insights

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.

Recent Posts

Browse by:

How to reenergize your organization to overcome pandemic fatigue

Pandemic fatigue is real: Some 75 percent of employees in the U.S. and close to a third in the APAC region report symptoms of burnout. The number of those who rate their mental health as “very poor” is more than three times higher than before the crisis. Encouragingly, companies are waking up to the need for greater compassion to unleash the full potential of their people. There are no easy answers, but these five actions have shown to be effective in reenergizing organizations. ...

Connect with our Organization Practice

Three podcast episodes to tackle today’s talent challenges

COVID-19 has dramatically altered the talent landscape. Paradoxically, unemployment rates remain remarkably high even as organizations struggle to address emerging skills gaps associated with the future of work. Now more than ever, talent must be central to leaders’ decision making. We created the McKinsey Talks Talent Podcast to help leaders navigate this fast-changing landscape and prepare for the future of work by making talent a competitive advantage. Our conversations ...

Inclusion doesn’t happen by accident: Measuring inclusion in a way that matters

Research overwhelmingly supports the same conclusion: Companies must aspire to have a diverse workforce. Decades of empirical research show that more diverse companies outperform less diverse companies (2015; 2018; 2020). Coupled with increasingly stronger norms around social justice, more and more companies feel compelled to focus on recruiting and promoting a workforce composed of individuals from differing backgrounds, experiences, and identities. However, diversity alone is not the full ...

Organizational effectiveness for sustained performance and health

Many organizations today find themselves in a continuous state of flux driven by a series of seemingly endless organizational redesigns. They must confront the brutal reality that as the pace of business accelerates, by the time one redesign is finally complete, it’s time to start another one. To get off this “reorganization treadmill” and change the performance trajectory, organizations should move away from episodic “cure-all” transformations to building ongoing ...

Build your organizational identity

Have you ever wondered how organizations can have beautiful visions and values statements on their walls, but walking through their hallways leaves you with a different impression? It often feels like two different worlds—what is said and what is real. However, organizations cannot afford this misalignment; without clear connections among why they exist (purpose), what they offer (value agenda), and how they operate (culture), they will struggle. Organizations of the future have closed ...

Unlocking the true value of effective feedback conversations

In our previous post on “Individual performance management in the COVID-19 world,” we addressed fairness as the foundation for effective performance management and highlighted the unique opportunity for organizations to redefine their approach to be more flexible, continuous, and development oriented. In the current environment, as people juggle work pressures with countless personal errands and tasks, the key to successful performance management is to also focus on quality, not ...

Are you building employee capabilities across these four critical areas?

We’ve long known that the key to driving sustainable long-term performance is to place an equal emphasis on how the organization makes money (performance) and how leaders run the place (health). Companies that do so outperform their peers threefold. More recently, we’ve found that leaders can capture even more value when they go one step further and focus on performance and health at both the organization and individual levels. Driving performance and health across levels ...

Insights to guide organizations in 2021, part 3

Dealing with uncertainty may be a certainty for leaders as they approach 2021. To help guide them and their organizations in this new year, we’ve gathered some of the leading insights and observations from McKinsey’s Organization Practice. Our first post in this three-part series shared observations from McKinsey’s Organization Practice in 2020 with a focus on organization design and culture and change. Our second post offered insights on inspiring individuals, ...

Insights to guide organizations in 2021, part 2

Dealing with uncertainty may be a certainty for leaders as they approach 2021. To help guide them and their organizations in this new year, we’ve gathered some of the leading insights and observations from McKinsey’s Organization Practice. Our first post in this three-part series shared some leading insights and observations from McKinsey’s Organization Practice in 2020 with a focus on organization design and culture and change. The themes of learnings offered in this ...

Insights to guide organizations in 2021, part 1

Dealing with uncertainty may be a certainty for leaders as they approach 2021. To help guide them and their organizations in this new year, we’ve gathered some of the leading insights and observations from McKinsey’s Organization Practice. 2020 accelerated many existing organizational trends, from the adoption of new, speed-enhancing operating models to a growing emphasis on values and purpose. In the first post of this three-part series, we’ll explore key takeaways focused on ...

Is your organization prepared for the future?

From shaping your organization’s purpose, to re-imagining decision making, to unlocking the potential of people, this year has accelerated many of the trends that drive major organizational change. Our Organizing for the Future thinking explores new principles, such as anti-fragility and experimentation, that are becoming increasingly critical for today’s organizations as they build more creative, adaptable, and human systems. As leaders and their organizations prepare for the ...

10 must-read posts from 2020

We launched the McKinsey Organization Blog hopeful that our weekly insights on leadership and organization could serve as a one-stop shop for impactful, fact-based, and pragmatic advice—in 600 words or less. In this most unusual year, distinguished by its uncharacteristic degree of change, we remain hopeful that we have and will continue to help organizations through the crisis and into recovery. Truly, the blog posts that best resonated with our readers—outlined ...

Hire more for skills, less for industry experience

COVID-19 has forced companies to rapidly adapt to changing talent needs. More than 70 million U.S. workers filed for unemployment insurance from March through December. Now, more organizations are converting what were furloughs early in the pandemic to permanent job losses. While many companies have parted ways with workers, others—from e-commerce firms to grocery stores—are looking to bring more on. Many are struggling to fill open roles. This should spark organizations to rethink ...

From remote work to organizational health: 5 ways to help teams during uncertain times

The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged organizations to operate in new ways. Throughout the year, we’ve seen organizations accelerate their digital transformations to support remote working, embrace a renewed sense of purpose, and drive impactful and lasting change. It certainly has not been easy, but this experience provided organizations with a better understanding of what they can accomplish—and how quickly—during times of uncertainty. In preparation for the new year ahead, ...

Shifts leaders are making to build their organization’s identity from the bottom-up

We all know the pace of change isn’t slowing down any time soon. However, we’re finding that organizations that endure and thrive in this environment are those with a clear and shared understanding of where they’re headed—that is, they have a clear sense of identity. To build an identity that is lived, breathed, and—most importantly—shared by all, leaders need to make four shifts in how they run their organizations: From “Purpose statements on ...