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Bruce Simpson

Senior Partner, Toronto
Advises aerospace, basic materials, and healthcare clients on operations, performance transformation, cultural change, and continuous improvement

About Bruce

Bruce Simpson is a senior partner of McKinsey & Company, where he has worked for nearly 30 years. He was the managing director of the Canada office for eight years and then convened the firm’s global Operations Practice. Bruce now co-leads the New Ventures Competition (NVC). This venture capital approach identifies, funds, and incubates startups inside McKinsey, leveraging McKinsey’s unparalleled access to leading companies and go-to-market channels to help them move rapidly from startup to scale up. NVC also seeks promising disruptive technologies outside the firm and builds collaborative partnerships with entrepreneurs and research institutions to develop applications for McKinsey clients.

Bruce serves major institutions in the aerospace, mining, and industrial sectors, as well as in the public sector, and he is an advocate for Canadian competitiveness in international business. His work includes designing and implementing transformation programs with large companies seeking to improve their business performance and achieve cultural renewal while fully engaging and aligning employees at all levels. He has extensive expertise in agile leadership, focusing on how leaders can build skills to handle volatility and unpredictability in their businesses. In addition, he helps clients develop strategies for long-term success that also address stakeholders’ economic, social, and environmental concerns.

Before moving to Canada in 2000, Bruce held various leadership roles at McKinsey in New York and Paris. He spent 12 years cofounding then helping to build the firm’s Operations Practice in Europe. Prior to joining McKinsey, he held various marketing and product management positions at P&G in Europe.

Bruce has published articles and given speeches on Canada in the Pacific Century, public sector productivity, business in society, and Canada-Japan and Canada-China business relationships. He is active in the community on healthcare, corporate social responsibility, and human rights issues. He serves on the boards of Catalyst, Human Rights Watch, and the Trans Canada Trail.

He holds a BA and an MA in law from Cambridge University, an MBA from The Wharton School, and an MA in international studies from the Joseph H. Lauder Institute for Management & International Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.

Bruce was awarded a Churchill Medallion by Her Majesty the Queen for exploration in China, was a professional ski racer and musician, and is a keen sea kayaker in the Arctic. He and his wife Tracy have three sons.

Published work

Flying people, not planes': The CEO of Bombardier on building a world-class culture,” McKinsey Quarterly, March 2011

Insights from business leaders on creating lasting change” (PDF–4.77 MB), Voices of Transformation 4, 2010

Elevating our vision of social responsibility” (PDF–970 KB), Corporate Social Responsibility Review, Conference Board of Canada, October 2007

Past experience

Procter & Gamble
Marketing brand manager

British Alpine Ski Team
Professional ski racer, then manager/coach


University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School
MBA; MA, international studies

University of Cambridge
BA, law; LLM