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About Jim Link | Testimonials

"Jim is, in one word, brilliant. He has the rare ability to be wildly creative and at the same time dead-on strategic. The result is you get great ideas that actually have a good chance of success. Plus, Jim is entertaining and a joy to be around—it’s impossible not to like him. Couple that with integrity and extremely high standards for his work, and I can't imagine why you would hire anyone else."
"It's ultimately Jim's way with people that sets him apart. I'm not entirely sure how, but Jim has a knack of getting on with people (marketing types and real consumers alike) that draws out their  creativity, but he does so hand-in-hand with getting under the skin of what an idea is all about - and how it can manifest itself in the real world. Working with Jim is an absolute joy and I have yet to meet anyone who hasn't felt re-energized by working with him."
"I love working with Jim because he takes on our questions as if they are his own. He's a real partner who understands that creative ideas alone do not a business make—they must work for consumers, for the brand and for our business objectives. As a marketer who has to carry new ideas forward, I value Jim's strong combination of strategy and creativity. His energy, humor and easy-going style make him a fun partner who delivers great results."
"Jim Link is a brilliant marketer. His creative thinking and marketing savvy has helped our company to understand innovation opportunities and how best to market and position our new products. He has added a lot of value to our organization."
"Can’t say enough about Jim. A rare combination of wit and wisdom, right and left brain, creativity and dead-on business instincts. He knows how to get things done and have a wonderful time doing it. He is honest, has enormous integrity and is just a complete joy to work with. Quite a guy. I have had the pleasure of working with him as both client and colleague and have never had anything but an outstanding experience."

“Creative yet strategic. Draws insights from flat data that leaves others stymied. Brings energy and provocative ideas to workshops that would otherwise leave us staring out the window by 2:00. If I had to bring one person with me to a meeting with Phil Knight or Steve Jobs, it would be Jim Link.”

"Jim has the rare combination of incredible, intuitive creativity and strategic business sense. I hired Jim (repeatedly)as a client with exceptional results.
"Jim has a way of seeing the patterns and opportunities that others miss, and that has made him invaluable to us in crafting our marketing strategy. He also has that rare ability to distill complexity into easy-to-understand images and phrases. That allows me to promote our strategic vision internally, as well as implement it externally. Jim has been a fantastic partner and his work has had a real impact!"

Training: Projects

“He’s incredibly strategic, and because he’s been in the marketing role before - gets that the outcomes need to be actionable, not just fluff."
“I've worked with Jim on numerous projects for years now. He is on my very short go-to list for insights or innovation projects. Jim has the rare combination of strategic smarts, ability to uncover actionable and provoking insights, and a collaborative and fun personality. Jim just "gets it" and will go above and beyond to deliver outstanding results."
“One thing I really like about Jim’s approach to market research is that he strives extremely hard to understand your objective and then creates a custom approach to achieve results…He does not try to “fit” you into some pre-existing template he has used before. He uses his experience and creativity to develop a methodology that works."

"Jim is the first person I think of when I have an objective and have no idea how to deliver on it. He is highly creative, but unlike most creative people, he is able to keep business goals and a business audience in mind with his deliverables. He helps me solve problems that have me stumped."

“Creative yet strategic. Draws insights from flat data that leaves others stymied. Brings energy and provocative ideas to workshops that would otherwise leave us staring out the window by 2:00. If I had to bring one person with me to a meeting with Phil Knight or Steve Jobs, it would be Jim Link.”

"Jim’s energy is boundless – whether he’s leading an ideation session or talking with consumers, he is able to elicit meaningful information and transform it into realistic, actionable concepts. This talent clearly comes naturally to him, but I know he also puts in a lot of effort behind the scenes to make it happen. (Plus he’s funnier than Robin Williams..)"

"1. Jim has a huge arsenal of techniques for eliciting nuggets of ideas; 2. He has exceptional copywriting skills to help capture and distil the ideas...; 3...and he has the strategic acumen to translate ideas into business opportunities."

"His solutions are very strategic, and always seems to light up the faces of marketing types with his ability to frame up and sell solutions from a new and inspired angle. He is also very good at taking a ton of information, helping to weed out the extraneous stuff, and get down to what really matters. The only problem I’ve ever had because of Jim is my arguments with colleagues over his availability and who gets him first!"

“After persuading half the Marketing department to come to an idea generating session with the promise that it was being run by a crazy wacko shipped in from the USA, Jim's opening greeting 'Hi, my name's Jim. I don't do 'wacky'.' rapidly brought the frenzied levels of expectation down a notch or two. But of course Jim was right - the affable chap from Stillwater doesn't do wacky. Instead he 'does' communication, and he does it exceptionally well. "

Training: Creativity
"Jim Link has transformed the way we think about creativity at Land O’Lakes. Thanks to his innovative approach and workshop, our marketers are better able to make connections across our business portfolio, as well as apply insights from other products and industries to our own. His framework is effective for both specific problem solving and white space/new product development."
—Michelle Freedman,
Director of Corporate Marketing Strategy, Land O’Lakes Inc.

“I’ve been doing this all along, but now you’ve given me a vocabulary to what I do; you’ve given it a name and a process. I didn’t realize this is what made me creative, but now it makes sense.”

“This gave me the awareness that even I can be creative; the take-away that this is a learned trait that can be evolved into something great.”

“I love the easy-step process to be ‘creative.’ I came in today thinking I wasn’t creative but am leaving with the correct tools to be creative.”

 “I am process-oriented so giving me a process I can work with was very energizing. It made me believe there was hope of becoming more creative!”

“This instantly made sense by explaining the linkage or path from inspiration to idea and the notion of idea-links as ‘idea molecules.’ The way you taught it was natural and intuitive.”

“Great! Very applicable. It puts some “science” and common language behind a subconscious event.”

“Just like Six Sigma gave us a common language around new product development, you’ve given us a common language for improving creativity.”

Training: Positioning

"Brilliant! Excellent analogies and great process to trigger different thinking & debate. Examples were very helpful to bring theory into reality. Very valuable!"

Fabulous in so many ways. Simple enough to get us inspired and set direction. Meaty enough to humble us to learn more in the area.

"Very powerful and extremely relevant content—concepts and examples. Jim is an engaging presenter and keeps the session engaging and interesting."

"I definitely feel that everyone in marketing, strategy or business unit manager role should get this training."

"Best course I've ever had at 3M. Outstanding. This will change the way we do marketing!"

"Great information to challenge some "conventional" understandings/tribal knowledge. Good foundation for future sessions and much debate to "conventional" practices. See immediate practical applications. Energizes me to learn much more."

"Very inspirational! And educational! I really enjoyed the analogies and case studies that were both relevant and pushed us to think outside the box."

"Jim was very engaging with relevant examples from both consumer & B2B environment. Did not realize it was 4:40 pm when we ended!"

"Jim was energetic, knowledgeable, motivating and focused. This session made me want to go back to school!"

Training: Ideation Facilitation

"Your style is great! I really liked that you were approachable and laid back while still being professional. You did a wonderful job translating your years of experience into a training experience that was spot on for where our group is at with our ideation practice. Working with you was a pleasure!"

"Style was perfect—open to meeting our needs and answering our questions. Modeled the training to our needs."


"IDEA-LINKS demystifies the creative process, providing a simple but powerful approach that anyone can use to increase innovative capacity. . . a valuable and very necessary addition to the literature on creativity."
—Ian Friendly, Chief Operating Officer, General Mills

"The magic of IDEA-LINKS is in its deceptive simplicity: a clear, actionable roadmap for building an organization’s capacity for continuous creativity."
—Peter Horst, Chief Marketing Officer, Capital One

"Jim Link has transformed the way we think about creativity at Land O’Lakes. If you’re looking for a way to help your employees become more creative, now there’s an easy answer. Read IDEA-LINKS."
—Michelle Freedman,
Director of Corporate Marketing Strategy, Land O’Lakes Inc.

"Jim strips the voodoo and mystery away from creativity and reveals it for what it is—a discipline and skill that with some effort anyone can master."
—Hans Birkholz, CEO, Windstar Cruises

"Jim Link has one of the most inventive minds in marketing and he used it to write the most engaging and useful book on creativity to date. IDEA-LINKS is one of those select business books you buy for yourself and the rest of your team. "
—Matt Smith,
Vice President, Global Innovation, Cargill

"IDEA-LINKS provides a fascinating, valuable road-map for fostering intellectual curiosity and teaching the disciplines needed to generate individual and organizational creativity."
—Dan Glaser,
Group President and Chief Operating Officer, Marsh & McLennan Companies

"Jim Link makes a compelling case that while we all start at a different level of creativity, anyone can increase his or her creativity with the right kind of practice. IDEA-LINKS shows us how."
—David Murphy, President, Red Wing Shoe Company

"IDEA-LINKS clear, practical approach makes increased creativity attainable for us all."
—Pam Moret,
Sr. Vice President, Strategic Development, Thrivent

"Jim dissects the intuitive leaps made by highly creative people into a simple and replicable process that anyone can follow to increase their creative potential."
—Ian Friendly, Chief Operating Officer, General Mills

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