Jim Willenbring

Jim Willenbring
Jim Willenbring
Carlson Executive Educators Network


Jim Willenbring is CEO and Partner at The Bailey Group, which is a leading Minnesota firm specializing in CEO advising, leadership team development, and executive coaching.

Prior to The Bailey Group, Jim founded and ran his own strategy consulting and leadership coaching practice for four years where he helped leaders develop winning strategies not just for their companies but also for their own leadership mastery. 

With over 30 years at Medtronic, Jim has deep executive leadership experience in business, therapy, and product strategy; digital health programs; and marketing, business analytics, and commercial operations teams. He is an expert in defining and translating unmet business needs into winning product, therapy, data, and service solutions. 

Among many leadership roles at Medtronic, Jim led teams and programs in these areas:

  • Defining new products, features, and services using state-of-the-art qualitative and quantitative market research, design thinking processes, advisory boards, and other innovation approaches. These products and services have impacted the lives of over 4 million patients worldwide and contributed to billions in annual revenues.
  • Commercial analytics teams and data & analytics transformation. Jim led the work to set up the environments, technology, processes, and culture that moved capabilities from reporting/descriptive analytics to predictive & prescriptive analytics. Jim is currently the president of the industry advisory board for the MS in Business Analytics program at the Carlson School of Management.
  • Strategic & portfolio planning for a $2B group of businesses, including annual strategic planning, opportunity assessment, competitive intelligence, market research, and the annual investment process for >$100M in R&D funding. Jim established an internal strategy consulting team that helped businesses with geographic expansion, market development, new business/pricing models, and optimizing marketing, sales, and service approaches. 

From these experiences, Jim is an excellent facilitator and teacher, having led 100+ advisory boards, numerous project and large group meetings and events, and taught change management as a Master Change Manager from GE’s Change Acceleration Program.

Jim has been a certified leadership development coach since 2014. He coached medical technology executives for 6 years within Medtronic and has coached leaders within healthcare, medical diagnostics, banking, revenue management, energy, marketing/advertising, and other industries since 2020.

Jim holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering and a Master of Science in Scientific & Technical Communication from the University of Minnesota.