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Emily Field


Shapes organizational strategies to establish talent management as a distinctive advantage, preparing leaders to manage the workforce of tomorrow and create business value

Emily partners with leaders to shape data-driven organizational strategies designed to achieve business objectives, establish talent management as a distinctive advantage, and secure the human resources function as a driver of business value.

Since joining McKinsey in 2017, Emily has worked with companies across industries, leading initiatives to transform the way organizations work. She puts particular emphasis on helping to establish a talent-first approach, instilling a high-performance culture, and adopting effective people-analytics approaches. Emily prepares leaders to manage the workforce of the future. She is also a coauthor of the book, Power to the Middle: Why Managers Hold the Keys to the Future of Work, and the report, Women in the Workplace 2023.

Examples of Emily’s recent client work include the following:

  • defining a retention strategy for a transportation and logistics company that resulted in a 30 percent increase in applications, a 15 percent decrease in attrition, and a four percent increase in EBITDA
  • architecting a workforce strategy for the apparel division of a large retailer, improving customer service while reducing costs
  • leading a talent-first transformation for a global consumer goods company by defining the workforce plan needed to achieve business strategy goals
  • designing and deploying an AI-driven performance management system for a pharmaceutical company with 90,000 employees, including a comprehensive change management plan to shift mindsets and build capabilities
  • developing a workforce strategy for a healthcare insurer, defining the skills needed for the future and a recruiting strategy to access the right talent
  • creating a diversity, equity, and inclusion strategy and roadmap for a basic materials company that defined goals, assessed the current state, and implemented quick wins

Passionate about helping others achieve their full potential, Emily volunteers as a mentor to veterans and low-income students through her work with Capital Partners for Education and American Corporate Partners.

Published Work

To defend against disruption, build a thriving workforce,” McKinsey & Company, May 2024

Going for goal—a dependable approach to setting 2024 objectives,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, January 2024

Women in the Workplace 2023,” McKinsey & Company, October 2023

Activating middle managers through capability building” McKinsey & Company, September 2023

The future of middle management” McKinsey & Company, August 2023

Are middle managers your next ace in the hole?” McKinsey & Company, McKinsey & Company, August 2023

Power to the Middle: Why Managers Hold the Keys to the Future of Work,” Harvard Business Review Press, July 2023

Don’t Eliminate Your Middle Managers,” Harvard Business Review, July 2023

Middle managers hold the key to unlock generative AI,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, July 2023

Middle managers are the heart of your company,” McKinsey Quarterly, July 2023

Investing in middle managers pays off—literally,” McKinsey & Company, June 2023

Talent tightrope: Tailor employee experience to support two key groups,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, May 2023

Stop wasting your most precious resource: Middle managers,” McKinsey & Company, March 2023

Bolder recruitment efforts can benefit organizations,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, September 2022

Stave off attrition with an internal talent marketplace,” McKinsey & Company, April 2022

A call to action: Provide employees with room to grow,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, February 2022

Piecing together the talent puzzle: How to bring a redeployment or skilling program to life,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, September 2021

Piecing together the talent puzzle: When to redeploy, upskill, or reskill,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, August 2021

The diversity imperative in retail,” McKinsey & Company, January 2021

Hire more for skills, less for industry experience,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, December 2020

Three steps to creating more value through talent,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, August 2020

Setting the “how” in performance management,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, December 2019

What banks need to know about hiring in a highly competitive environment,” McKinsey & Company, May 2019

Hiring from unlikely sources as the talent pool shrinks,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, November 2018

Past Experience

Manager, talent and organization strategy


Georgetown University
BA, political science and government, history, Spanish