Executive Fellow, Harvard Business School
Former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Medtronic
Author of True North: Emerging Leader Edition
Travels from: Minnesota
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Bill George is an executive fellow at Harvard Business School, where he was a Professor of Management Practice and Senior Fellow teaching leadership from 2004-2022. He is the former chairman and chief executive officer of Medtronic. He joined Medtronic in 1989 as president and chief operating officer, was chief executive officer from 1991-2001, and board chair from 1996-2002. Earlier in his career, he was a senior executive with Honeywell and Litton Industries and served in the U.S. Department of Defense.
Bill is the author of True North: Emerging Leader Edition and True North Fieldbook: Emerging Leader Edition; Discover Your True North and The Discover Your True North Fieldbook; Authentic Leadership, True North and Finding Your True North, 7 Lessons for Leading in Crisis and True North Groups.
He has served on Goldman Sachs, ExxonMobil, Novartis, Target, and the Mayo Clinic boards. He is a life director of the Guthrie Theater and is an executive committee and board member of the YMCA of the North. He has served on the World Economic Forum USA board and board chair for Allina Health System, Abbott-Northwestern Hospital, United Way of the Greater Twin Cities, and Advamed.
In 2014, the Franklin Institute awarded him the Bower Award for Business Leadership, and he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2012. He was named one of the “Top 25 Business Leaders of the Past 25 Years” by PBS, “Executive of the Year-2001” by the Academy of Management, and “Director of the Year-2001-02” by the National Association of Corporate Directors. Bill is a frequent contributor to CNBC, Fortune Magazine, and The Wall Street Journal and makes frequent appearances on television and radio.
He received his BSIE with high honors from Georgia Tech, his MBA with high distinction from Harvard University, where he was a Baker Scholar, and honorary PhDs from Georgia Tech, Mayo Medical School, University of St. Thomas, Augsburg College, and Bryant University. During 2002-03 he was a professor at IMD International and Ecole Polytechnique in Lausanne, Switzerland, and executive-in-residence at Yale School of Management.
Bill George's Programs
FINDING YOUR TRUE NORTH