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June 29, 2021

We are requesting proposals from interested parties to support with our Public Relations (PR) efforts as our organization scales and transforms.


McKinsey.org is an independent non-profit founded in 2018 by McKinsey & Company to address the world’s most complex social and environmental challenges by partnering across sectors to create lasting and substantial impact. 

McKinsey.org is an independent non-profit founded in 2018 by McKinsey & Company to address the world’s most complex social and environmental challenges by partnering across sectors to create lasting and substantial impact.
Rethinking Recycling – our flagship program – aims to dramatically improve recycling systems in cities around the world so that they are truly economically sustainable, socially inclusive, and environmentally beneficial – thus accelerating the transition to a zero-waste, circular economy. We focus particularly on plastics and organics (food and garden waste) in the post- consumer waste stream, which together drive much of the waste pollution crisis and its contribution to climate change.

Rethinking Recycling has three major components, aimed at overcoming the vicious cycle of poor supply and inadequate demand for recycled material that plagues most cities today:

  • We improve supply of recyclable waste at the source through better design of collection systems and behavioral nudges.
  • We build community recycling systems that drive cost efficiency and ethical operations in sorting, logistics, and processing of recyclable waste.
  • We work to stabilize recycling demand and unlock better pricing by streamlining and bringing transparency to the full recycling value chain.

Our goal is to create a rapidly replicable model for managing waste that cities around the world will adopt. We currently have programs in three locations: Buenos Aires and Olavarria in Argentina and Bali in Indonesia. Read more about our work on our current website.

In the future, McKinsey.org has ambitions to diversify to other causes and programs.


We are looking for a PR firm to develop and execute a comprehensive integrated PR strategy as our organization scales and transforms. Our primary objectives are fundraising, building strategic partnerships with likeminded organizations, establishing our reputation in thought leadership, generating brand awareness, and attracting talent.

To this effect, we are open to receiving proposals for a retainer-based consultancy for up to 6 months. Our per month budget is maximum $10k/month, however, proposals with lower cost base will be favorably evaluated. Also, please note that while the usual billing model for a PR agency is retainership, we are open to proposals with other billing modes that address our requirements.


The selected PR firm will help develop and execute an integrated PR strategy to meet the objectives listed above through tasks such as, but not limited to:

  • Creating an overall narrative, key messages, and FAQ documents with focus on human- and impact-centred storytelling
  • Securing opportunities and developing content for mainstream media coverage including: Press releases, press coverage, feature/op-ed articles, and TV interviews. (Our focus markets are primarily US/Europe/global media, with secondary focus on local media in Argentina and Indonesia)
  • Supporting activities to secure and develop content for event speaking opportunities
  • Supporting the creation, hosting and amplification of McKinsey.org events, webinars, podcasts and/or knowledge-series, as required
  • Supporting the writing and amplification of thought-leadership reports
  • Working closely with the communications/PR agency counterparts at our partner or funder organizations to co-create and cross amplify initiatives and content, as required
  • Vetting and servicing any in-bound PR opportunities, as these become available
  • Supporting and managing any crisis communication, as required
  • Tracking and sharing of communications/PR results on a campaign/ monthly basis; typical results could include items such as PR value generated, placements garnered, number of readers/audiences reached etc.

Proposals also offering below additional services (in order of priority) will be favorably explored:

  • Developing a strategy for social media that aligns with the PR strategy
  • Developing content and tracking results for social media, blog posts etc.
  • Building a public profile for our top 2-3 senior executives (social media, thought leadership through events etc.)
  • Supporting the writing and amplification of external newsletters
  • Supporting with content creation for key documents such as pitch decks and fundraising materials

If your fee structures do not fit within our budget’s ceiling, we are open to receiving best- efforts proposals that address a prioritized portion of the Statement of Work, based on your assessment of which initiatives will help move the needle furthest on our objectives.


  • Overarching Public Relations strategy and calendar of activities
  • Garnering participation in 3-5 medium-big banner events (e.g., The Economist APAC World Ocean Summit; Global Summit Consumer Goods Forum; Green Biz events)
  • Deliver a total of ~10 quality media placements in US, Europe, global traditional media outlets over the course of 6 months
  • For additional items such as social media/blogs,
    • Grow our organic social media follower base from current ~10k to ~15k in the next 6 months (this is mostly in line with the current growth we are witnessing)
    • Deliver 2-3 established public profiles for our organization’s senior executives including revamped social media presence (~2-3 posts/week/executive), though-leadership posts (1-2/executive during the 6 months period) and events presence (1 event/executive during the 6 months period)
    • Grow impressions and engagement by 30% compared to 2021 H1 baseline figures for our organization’s social media handles (this is mostly in line with the current growth we are witnessing)
    • Publish 2-3 blogs over 6 months with ideally organic visits of ~1-2k/blog and average time spent 1.5+ minutes (this is mostly in line with the current results we are experiencing)

Kindly note these KPIs are, by no means, cast in stone, but they are very much our north- star; these results are ideally something we would like to land as close to as possible at the other end of this 6-month period.


McKinsey.org is committed to working in a collaborative way that allows for upfront strategic alignment, frequent sharing of feedback and iterative manner of working. In turn, we expect high quality draft outputs to react to and provide feedback on.

The selected firm will be available for regularly scheduled weekly or periodical programmed phone calls and as needed with the rest of the team to ensure consistent communication and alignment on active tasks and deliverables. The firm will also provide activity reports on an agreed upon schedule.


We are looking for the PR agency to kick-start at the earliest possible in the next month or two, no later than mid-August.


McKinsey.org retains the rights to all content and documents created.


Proposals should be concise and limited to information requested, no longer than 8 ppt/pdf pages for the main body and not more than 10 pages for appendix. Each proposal shall include the following information. In the main body, besides an introduction to your organisation and its work, please make sure to include the following:

  • Work plan: Provide a plan for delivering the features outlined in the Statement of Work, including your approach, timelines, deliverables, and expected results.
  • Costs: Submit a detailed line-by-line cost proposal to deliver the Statement of Work. State preferred payment terms, specifying share of upfront payment expected. Cost proposals must include all costs that will be incurred including any projected additional reimbursable costs. Please use the attached budget template to submit the cost estimates. In the event that you can not access the budget template, please visit our website which has the RFP and the budget template.
  • Schedule: Provide a schedule outlining key milestones related to the scope of work and estimated date of completion.
  • Team: Include a list of proposed personnel who will work on the project, allocations of time each person will work with us and the corresponding hourly or daily rates.

In the Appendix please include,

  • Qualifications: Provide resumes of the key personnel to be assigned and list their portfolio within the last three years.
  • Regional links: Please also mention support staff fluency in Spanish and/or Bahasa as that is considered a plus (English required); please also mention any press networks in the two regions of Indonesia and Argentina
  • Case examples or samples: Provide examples of relevant experience. Experience in PR and content writing for the nonprofit sector a plus
  • Location: Physical presence in North America, Australia, SE Asia and/or South America a plus
  • Additional services (optional): Include any related and recommended services not specified in this RFP which may be considered essential or beneficial by the firm. These services should be priced separately.
  • References: Provide 3 professional references including name and daytime contact information

An electronic version of the proposal must be submitted to Aishwarya Sharma at aishwarya@mckinsey.org 


Bidders can submit questions in one sending to Aishwarya Sharma by 7 July 2021 at aishwarya@mckinsey.org. By submitting questions, bidder acknowledges that their questions will be collated into a document of all questions and answers, to be posted for viewing by all bidders.

  • Answers will be provided within 72 hours, excluding weekends/holidays.
  • All proposals must be received by 16 July 2021 by 5pm EST
  • The criteria for evaluation is how well a proposal addresses the various sections of this RFP i.e. Statement of work, cost, prior relevant experience, robustness of work plan, timelines etc. These criteria will be used by the McKinsey.org Team to determine, in its sole judgement, the most qualified firm.
  • It is the responsibility of the firm submitting a proposal to ensure that the proposal is delivered on time. Any proposals received after the deadline will not be considered.
  • The Project Team reserves the right to reject any or all proposals with or without cause.


The selection of a firm will be made based on experience and qualifications; ability of proposed approach to meet the needs of the organization; and cost effectiveness. The finalist agencies will be notified by 23 July 2021 and will be asked to respond to final negotiation requests and questions based on the review provided by the team. The selected company will commence work on 9 August unless otherwise negotiated. McKinsey.org reserves the right to push back any of the above dates as per its discretion.

Questions? Checkout our Q&A document.