The McKinsey Week in Charts

From face time to FaceTime

Most companies expected employees to come into the office before the pandemic. Now more accustomed to working via video calls, most C-suite executives expect a hybrid work model to be the norm in the future.

To read the article, see “What executives are saying about the future of hybrid work,” May Vaccine development and the two-hour marathon 17, 2021.

Vaccine development and the two-hour marathon

The mean development timeline for all new drugs (including vaccines) since 2000—from clinical testing to approval—was about ten years. Yet three COVID-19 vaccines were granted emergency-use authorization (EUA) or other forms of approval in Europe, the United Kingdom, or the United States just 11 months after the SARS-CoV-2 sequence was published. At every step, science moved faster than anyone thought possible—just like modern marathoners.

To read the article, see “Fast-forward: Will the speed of COVID-19 vaccine development reset industry norms?”, May 13, 2021.

Viruses as a force for good

Excitement about viral-vector gene therapies is growing. Biotech companies have learned to modify adenoviruses (and others) into drug-delivery vehicles to introduce specific DNA sequences—encoding genes, regulatory RNAs, or other therapeutic substrates—into cells. More than 100 such assets were in clinical trials in late 2020, many developed by small- and midsize biotech companies and academic labs supported by venture capital. Big pharmaceutical companies are moving quickly to acquire them.

To read the article, see “Gene-therapy innovation: Unlocking the promise of viral vectors,” May 17, 2021.

Meet them in the middle

Employees who feel that there is purpose in their work are overall more fulfilled at work. Employers should aim to help meet this need, or risk losing talent to companies that will.

To read the article, see “Help your employees find purpose—or watch them leave,” April 5, 2021.

Heads up

Optimism is on the rise. In our latest McKinsey Global Survey on the economy, 43 % of respondents feel their companies will increase head count within the next six months. It’s the first time since the pandemic began that a majority of respondents have expressed this sentiment.

To read the survey, see “The coronavirus effect on global economic sentiment,” April 30, 2021.