Bill George, Business Speaker, Thought Leader, Entrepreneur, Leadership Speaker, Bill George speaks with the authority that comes from extraordinary business success and he has become a leading champion for a new approach to leadership that connects corporate performance to its ethics and values. He built Medtronic—already a good company—into a great company whose stock returns outperformed the market by spectacular margins and whose market capitalization grew during his 12-year tenure from $1.1 billion to more than $60 billion.

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Bill George

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Background

Bill George speaks with the authority that comes from extraordinary business success and he has become a leading champion for a new approach to leadership that connects corporate performance to its ethics and values. He built Medtronic—already a good company—into a great company whose stock returns outperformed the market by spectacular margins and whose market capitalization grew during his 12-year tenure from $1.1 billion to more than $60 billion.

The key to this success, he proposes, is leadership based on character and values. In his bestselling book, Authentic Leadership: Rediscovering the Secrets to Creating Lasting Value, he explains why—and how—mission-driven and values-driven companies outperform those that are driven primarily by financial performance. Authentic Leadership was chosen as one of the best books on leadership in 2004 by strategy+business magazine. Bill George is a Professor of Management Practice at Harvard Business School and the Chairman of The Center for Leadership and Business Ethics.

Areas of Expertise

In the highly-acclaimed Authentic Leadership, he shows how to develop the five essential dimensions of authentic leaders—purpose, values, heart, relationships and self-discipline—and provides seasoned answers to some of business leadership’s most challenging problems. In his other writings and speeches, and in his role as an academic mentor to tomorrow’s leaders, he champions responsible business. And in his own career, he has modelled how to succeed as a business leader by doing things right. PBS Nightly News has named Mr. George one of “The 25 Most Influential Business People of the Last 25 Years.”

Prior to joining the Harvard faculty in January 2004, Mr. George was Executive-in-Residence at Yale University’s School of Management and Professor of Leadership and Governance at IMD International in Lausanne, Switzerland. Before joining Medtronic, Mr. George served in executive positions at Honeywell and at Litton Industries, and as a civilian in the U.S. Department of Defense. Bill George currently serves on the board of directors of Goldman Sachs, Novartis, and Target Corporation; he has been a member of ten corporate boards and two-dozen not-for-profit boards. He has been named Executive-of-the-Year by the Academy of Management (2001) and Director-of-the-Year by NACD (2001-02).

As one of the most successful CEOs of our time, Bill George stands as a shining example of how to build strong businesses by leading with character. His experience and insights are invaluable to those who want their own companies to thrive in ways that matter to all the people their companies touch while improving consumer confidence and delivering good investment returns.

During Bill George’s decade as CEO, Medtronic’s revenues more than quintupled and its market value went up fifty times; more importantly, it was transformed from a pacemaker manufacturer to a leader in a broad range of medical technologies whose people embrace innovation and change. Key to this success was Bill’s unique leadership style, which centres on establishing authentic connections with the organization’s people. Bill will detail his principles of motivating with mission, exhibiting compassion and consistency, and practicing solid values. He will show how these principles can be applied in any enterprise, and will share his insights into the contemporary crisis in corporate leadership and how it can be resolved.

Client Comments

“Anyone interested in how to become an effective leader should meet Bill George, former CEO of one of America’s finest companies – Medtronic. The next best way is to read Bill’s extraordinarily readable and compelling book.”

Arthur Levitt, former chairman of SEC

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