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Brian Quinn

Partner, Chicago
Leads transformational programs for clients across industries, building innovation, design, and digital capabilities to create growth and strengthen the ability of their organizations to create new growth

About Brian

Brian is a leader of McKinsey’s innovation and design work, partnering with executives to build an institutional ability to innovate and drive breakthrough growth.

He focuses on end-to-end innovation transformations, helping clients set winning strategies that demand innovation to achieve them; putting the strategy in motion by developing new products, processes, services, and business models; and building the supporting operating model to sustain innovation over time. Brian has deep experience in helping clients build new governance systems, incubators, accelerators, training academies, and other systems to foster an innovative organization and culture. He is also an expert in using design methods to solve business problems and drive innovation.

One of the firm's leading experts on innovation, Brian has helped clients across a wide array of industries seek cutting-edge change, with a particular focus on consumer-facing businesses and healthcare.

Examples of his recent client work include the following:

  • designing eight breakthrough-growth businesses for a leading pharmacy-company projected to deliver over $1 billion in new growth for the enterprise and strengthen its omnichannel capabilities
  • setting an innovation strategy, designing a new organizational and operating model, and developing two breakthrough-innovation platforms for a leading medical-technology company
  • creating a bold new growth strategy for a leading Japanese food and consumer-products company, including five platforms, each projected to deliver over $100 million in new growth
  • setting an innovation strategy and designing a new innovation operating model for a leading regional utility

In 2013, Brian coauthored Ten Types of Innovation: The Discipline of Building Breakthroughs, which provides organizations with a systematic method for envisioning a range of innovation possibilities, identifying opportunities, and developing differentiated solutions. He has been a regular contributor to Forbes, and his writing on innovation has been published in the Wall Street Journal, Businessweek, Fast Company, and The Conference Board Review. He speaks regularly on innovation at conferences and private executive retreats.

Before joining McKinsey, Brian was a partner and coleader at a design-driven innovation firm, where he oversaw its methods, developed its perspectives, and managed its innovation talent in addition to leading client programs.

Published Work

Future of insurance: Unleashing growth through new business building,” McKinsey & Company, December 2020

The innovation commitment,” McKinsey Quarterly, October 2019

From lab to leader: How consumer companies can drive growth at scale with disruptive innovation,” McKinsey & Company, September 2018

You Can’t Outsource Innovation,” Forbes, September 2016

Not So Fast: What Problem Are We Trying to Solve?Forbes, July 2016

Reframe to Innovate: Recognizing You’re an Innovation Leader,” Forbes, April 2016

Brian Quinn, “Reframe to Innovate: Your Enterprise and Organization,” Forbes, March 7, 2016

Re-frame to Innovate: Your Industry, Your Company and Yourself,” Forbes, January 2016

Stop Trying To Act Like A Startup,” Forbes, December 2015

Why Measuring Innovation Matters,” Forbes, November 2015

Ten Types of Innovation: The Discipline of Building Breakthroughs, Wiley, 2013

Past Experience


Monitor Deloitte
Associate partner


Amherst College
BA, premedical studies