Back to

Collin Cole

Partner, Austin
Brings a scalable design approach to help companies create better digital products and solutions

About Collin

For Collin, digital design is about putting a human lens on technology. The goal is to make it accessible, meaningful, and more personal. He has helped companies across sectors transform their business practices—and their industries—as they weather the continuing evolution of new technologies.

Part of McKinsey’s Experience Design leadership, Collin is a 30-year design veteran. In 1996, he founded a renowned design company’s digital practice, built global teams, and led client engagements. He comes to McKinsey as the founder and CEO of an experience-design studio, Carbon12, that served some of the most recognizable retail, technology, and communications brands. Focused on digital-product innovation, he directed studios in Eastern Europe, India, and the United States. In 2016, Collin's experience-design team joined McKinsey.

Collin sees design as a multidisciplinary opportunity to bring together business executives, technologists, designers, and end users. His recent work includes leading design for the digital transformations for industrial clients. With a focus on applying user research, design thinking, and new technology, these efforts have redefined core business processes, tools, and solutions.

Collin’s other work includes B2B and B2C e-commerce, design for the connected home and Internet of Things, and conducting design-thinking workshops with stakeholders representing business units, operations, and product development.

Collin currently serves as a lecturer at The University of Texas at Austin’s new School of Design and Creative Technologies. His courses reflect our McKinsey Design approach, which combines user-driven design thinking and data-rich quantitative methods, with the goal of creating measurable business impact.

Past experience

carbon12 creative
Founder and CEO

frog design
Vice president, creative

Virtual Studio
Founder and president


The University of Texas at Austin
BFA, design