This is a profile image of Blair Epstein

Blair Epstein

PartnerBay Area

Helps CEOs and leaders transform their organizations at scale, from strategy to execution

Blair works across industries to guide organizations through complex transformations, equip top teams with the capability to drive and lead organizational change, facilitate organizational design and cultural integration in post-merger environments, and counsel CEOs to excel in their roles. In doing so, she helps clients transition into new roles, align their teams, put the right talent in the right place, and achieve sustained performance.

As a leader of our CEO excellence work, Blair is a key shaper of our approach to counseling leaders throughout their journeys, from aspiring to be CEO to transitioning into the role to mid-tenure leaders looking for the next S-curve, on to succession planning. She was instrumental in the creation of our best-selling book, CEO Excellence: The Six Mindsets That Distinguish the Best Leaders from the Rest.

Her recent client work includes the following:

  • leading a pediatric academic medical center in setting a new five-year strategy, defining required cultural shifts, building the capabilities of the top 1,000 leaders and influencers, and implementing change management to improve performance and organizational health
  • advising a healthcare system board in preparing for a CEO transition, defining requirements for selecting the next CEO, executive-level organizational design and role mandates, and actions to ensure CEO success
  • guiding a CEO on the technical and leadership capabilities required of the company’s executive team and board to achieve success and strategized changes to make over a three- to five-year horizon
  • supporting a regulated gas utility on a comprehensive turnaround, including organizational redesign, 10,000-plus hours of capability building, and a lean operations rollout, delivering savings of $1.3 billion in addition to quality and productivity improvements
  • redesigning a global financial-services company’s operating model, matching talent to critical roles, and driving cultural change to creating a “one company” way of working, accelerating performance while attracting and retaining key talent
  • defining the cultural priorities and action plan for the integration of a new 80,000-person organization in a heavily regulated sector, including stabilizing the organization

Previously, Blair was a fellow in our Public & Social Sector Practice in the Washington, DC office.

Published work

How to transition out of the CEO role,” McKinsey & Company, January 2024

Capturing the value of ‘one firm’,” McKinsey Quarterly, May 2023

How can utilities protect and strengthen their culture during the COVID crisis?,” blog post, McKinsey & Company, July 2020

Continuous improvement: the realities of making the shift,” blog post, McKinsey & Company, June 2019

Continuous improvement: how to get started,” blog post, McKinsey & Company, May 2019

How continuous improvement can build a competitive edge,” blog post, McKinsey & Company, May 2019


University of Stanford

Yale University
BA, political science and Spanish