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Bill George

Harvard Business School Professor, former Medtronic CEO

Articles

Can One Leader Make a Difference in Today’s World?

We remember how Jack Welch transformed General Electric during his twenty years at the helm, turning it into the world’s most valuable private corporation with the power of his brilliance and his powerful, dynamic personality. While Welch’s managerial style worked well in the last half of the 20th century, it seems unlikely it would work today…

Fortune: When Should CEOs Speak Out on Public Issues?

Late last week, Texas and Florida joined Georgia and Arizona in passing laws that restrict voter access to the polls. In response, a wide swath of corporate leaders have voiced their opposition. CEOs are increasingly being called upon to comment publicly on complex policy issues, yet the decision to get personally involved is a difficult one for…

The Pros and Cons of Working Remotely

A great debate is raging in organizations about whether employees will return to their offices or continue to work remotely once COVID-19 is under control and most people are vaccinated. Gartner’s recent survey finds that about 70% of employees wish to continue some form of remote work.  Twitter, Oracle and Google have already given their…

With Georgia Voting Law, the Business of Business Becomes Politics

Coca-Cola and Delta received blowback from both left and right for their response to Georgia’s new voting law. Engaging on social issues is now part of the CEO job description, but it’s a treacherous path. Big consumer brands like Coca-Cola Co. KO 0.18% and Delta Air Lines Inc. DAL -2.01% for years have positioned themselves as forces for promoting what they see as social good—an…

Fortune: A 7-Step Plan for Business Leaders to Win in the Post-COVID Economy

Finally there is some light at the end of the long, dark COVID-19 tunnel: Vaccine makers Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson committed to Congress that they will supply 240 million doses by the end of March, enough for 130 million Americans. For the past year, most businesses have been playing defense. While the pandemic has endured a long…

A 6-point Agenda for a New America Under President Biden

The year 2020 will go down in history as the most difficult in America’s 244-year history as a democracy. COVID-19 has killed 400,000 Americans, ending the year less under control than ever. The American economy shed 9.4 million jobs. The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis triggered protests and riots across the country. And the new year…

COVID-19 Vaccines Are Here, But Who Gets Priority?

With COVID-19 raging at all-time levels throughout U.S., highly efficacious vaccines are coming, but in limited supply. That raises the question, who will get priority? Lobbying by big unions and large companies to get their employees vaccinated first is intense. This lobbying risks leaving non-union employees, small businesses and individual practitioners out in the cold….

Gratitude

As Thanksgiving 2020 arrives, it is time to take stock and express our gratitude for all those who have made our lives both possible and fruitful this past year. Without question, 2020 has been the most challenging year of our lives. The global pandemic hit full force throughout the world as more than 55 million…

Fortune: We Need a G.I. Bill for Frontline Workers, the Heroes of COVID-19

COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc, as the disease has infected more than 8.6 million Americans, 225,000 of whom have died. It has also elevated a set of real heroes: the frontline workers who risk their lives every day to make our lives possible. These heroes include medical workers such as doctors, nurses, and medical technicians, as…

I Voted for Joe Biden – Here’s Why

A Vote for Unity and Stability over Continuing Divisiveness and Chaos On September 23 Penny and I voted in person at an early voting place in Minneapolis. I cast my vote for President for Joe Biden. Here is why I made that choice: In the world’s most powerful leadership position, America needs a leader who…