This is a profile image of Gemma D’Auria

Gemma D’Auria

Senior Partner, Milano

Supports organizations to build capabilities, develop leaders, and drive culture transformations in support of stronger financial performance and health


Gemma is a leader of our People & Organizational Performance Practice in the Middle East. She began her McKinsey career in our New York office in 2005, relocating to Dubai in 2008.

Gemma is passionate about helping executives enhance the organizational effectiveness of their companies. She drives transformational change programs that lead to stronger performance while also boosting overall organizational health. Her areas of focus are organizational learning and leadership development, two of the most critical levers in driving sustainable and long-lasting change.

In her advisory work, Gemma primarily works with consumer and retail-oriented businesses. She also has served leading financial institutions, principal investors, and family-owned businesses. When consulting in the financial sector, she addresses wealth management and private banking questions as well as leadership and capability building opportunities.

Examples of her recent client work include the following:

  • establishing a corporate academy for a leading private-sector conglomerate that encompasses a school of leadership, a school of analytics and technology, and a school of customer experience, including defining a vision, strategy, and a leadership model tailored to the organization’s strategic objectives
  • leading a holistic digital and analytics transformation at a retail conglomerate, including establishing an advanced analytics unit and shifting the organizational culture to become more data driven and technology enabled
  • transforming the operating model and culture of a diversified conglomerate, changing its operating model from a passive investor to a strategic architect, including best-practice talent and performance management
  • establishing a corporate academy to upskill existing and future leaders at one of Pakistan’s leading industrial conglomerates, the first of its kind in the country
  • developing and launching a program for a Middle East country to develop future leaders across all industries and sectors nationwide, in collaboration with a European business school

Beyond client-focused projects, Gemma fosters leadership development in other programmatic ways. She leads the firm’s leadership and learning work in EEMA, which offers capability building and learning opportunities to a wide range of managers and executives. She is one of the contributors to a book recently published by McKinsey, called Leadership at Scale, focused on how to effectively enhance leadership capacity in organizations.

Before joining McKinsey, Gemma worked in the investment banking division of a multinational investment bank and financial-services company in London, both in mergers and acquisitions and in equity capital and derivative markets. She speaks English, French, Italian, and Spanish.

Published work

How CEO Alain Bejjani, an emerging-markets leader, models resilience,” McKinsey & Company, February 2022

Grocers can fuel growth with advanced analytics,” McKinsey & Company, June 2021

Sustainably shifting how an organization leads,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, July 2020

Reimagining the post-pandemic organization,” McKinsey Quarterly, May 2020

Tuning in, turning outward: Cultivating compassionate leadership in a crisis,” McKinsey & Company, May 2020

Leadership in a crisis: Responding to the coronavirus outbreak and future challenges,” McKinsey & Company, March 2020

Leadership at Scale, McKinsey & Company, December 2018

Retailing in the Middle East: How to recapture profitable growth,” McKinsey & Company, November 2017

Reshaping ‘retail-tainment’ in the Middle East and beyond,” McKinsey & Company, August 2017


Stanford University, Graduate School of Business

London School of Economics
BSc, government and economics