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Tomas Hult - Michigan State University. East Lansing, MI, US

Tomas Hult Tomas Hult

Director of International Business Center, Professor of Marketing | Michigan State University


Expert in global strategy and international trade







Global Trade and Global Supply Chains: Dr Tomas Hult, guest talk at Leeds University Business School Dr. Tomas Hult discusses the benefits of a global strategy Dr. Tomas Hult discusses the role of non-traditional investors in financing the SDGs



Tomas Hult is the Byington Endowed Chair, Professor of Marketing and International Business, and Director of the International Business Center (IBC) in the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University (John W. Byington, a marketing research expert, was a former president of the NPD Group Worldwide Inc.). He has been at MSU since January 2001, and teaches for the Marketing, Management, and Supply Chain Management departments. IBC is one of 17 centers designated by the U.S. Department of Education as a center of excellence in international business and trade (i.e., CIBER). On behalf of the State of Michigan, IBC serves as a Regional Export Network (REN) for 24 counties in mid-Michigan (Regions 5, 6, 7, and 9). Hult's expertise and research focus are in international business, marketing strategy, supply chain management, and strategic management (with specialty areas in firm performance, stakeholder strategy, sustainability, customer satisfaction, and statistics methodology). Hult leverages his expertise on his radio show, globalEDGE Business Beat on the Michigan Business Network, where he interviews top business and academic leaders.

Previously, Hult held positions as Eli Broad Professor of International Business; Professor of Marketing and Supply Chain Management; and Associate Dean in MSU's Eli Broad College of Business. MSU's Broad College of Business is consistently ranked among the top 15 schools for both U.S. graduate and undergraduate public business programs. The Broad College is also consistently among the top 10 institutions in international business research. As one of the largest business schools in the U.S., the Broad College has more than 7,400 students, is accredited by AACSB, and is a member of the Global Business School Network. Michigan State University is one of 62 members of the prestigious Association of American Universities.

Hult has been the Executive Director of the Academy of International Business (AIB) and President of the AIB Foundation since 2004. He is President and has been a Board Member of the Sheth Foundation since 2010, and board member of the International Trade Center of Mid-Michigan and the Economic Club of Greater Lansing. Hult also serves on the Lansing Regional Sister Cities Commission (The Mayor of Lansing appointed Tomas Hult to the Commission in 2014).

Industry Expertise (4)

Public Policy Program Development Research Education/Learning

Areas of Expertise (7)

Global Strategy Exporting International trade Economic Development International business Marketing Supply Chain Management

Accomplishments (1)

CUTCO-Vector Distinguished Marketing Educator (professional)

Awarded by the Academy of Marketing Science

Education (3)

University of Memphis: Ph.D., Marketing 1995

Murray State University: M.B.A., Marketing 1991

Fyrisskolan: M.S., Mechanical Engineering 1987

Affiliations (14)

  • Academy of International Business: Fellow
  • Academy of Management
  • Academy of Marketing Science
  • American Marketing Association
  • Association of International Education Administrators
  • Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals
  • European Marketing Academy
  • Industrial Marketing and Purchasing Group
  • Institute for Operations Research & Management Sciences
  • Institute for Supply Management
  • Strategic Management Society
  • Sheth Foundation
  • International Trade Center of Mid-Michigan
  • Economic Club of Greater Lansing

News (6)

Are You Overestimating How Happy Your Customers Are?

Business News Daily  online


Are You Overestimating How Happy Your Customers Are?
Credit: Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock
Despite the millions of dollars businesses spend gathering data about how happy their customers are, company leaders often don't understand, or know what to do with, the information they receive, new research finds.

The study, which was recently published in the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, discovered that after reviewing customer feedback, data senior managers frequently have an unrealistic view of just how satisfied their customers are.

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Beat the Stock Market by Satisfying Customers

MSU Today  


“Many companies collect customer satisfaction data regularly but few companies know how to use the data effectively to drive bottom line performance of their firms,” said Tomas Hult, Byington Endowed Chair at MSU and director of MSU’s International Business Center...

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Why Do Consumers Participate in 'Green' Programs?

MSU Today  online


Doing good makes customers feel good, and that “warm glow” shapes opinion, said Tomas Hult, Byington Endowed Chair and professor of marketing in the Eli Broad College of Business. But it gets more complicated when companies throw incentives into the mix.

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Companies Can Succeed During a Global Economic Crisis, Says MSU Study

MSU Today  


Companies can control their own fate even amidst a global financial meltdown, according to research by Tomas Hult, director of Michigan State University’s International Business Center, and several colleagues at MSU...

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Marketing Creates Value in Supply Chains, Says 50 Years of Research

MSU Today  


“Companies that can combine marketing channels effectively with the other functions in supply chains satisfy customers better, get repeat sales from these customers, and have stronger overall brands,” said Tomas Hult, a professor of marketing co-author of the article. “Customers want to buy from these companies.”...

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Community Colleges Expected to Triple Efforts to internationalize

MSU Today  


“We suggest that a target goal of internationalizing 20 percent of community college programming by 2024 is preferred to maintain the international competitiveness of the United States workforce,” said lead researcher Tomas Hult, director of IBC, and Byington Endowed Chair and Professor of International Business...

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Journal Articles (5)

An abnormally abnormal intangible: Stock returns on customer satisfaction Journal of Marketing


Sorescu and Sorescu (2016) and Bharadwaj and Mitra (2016) have made a number of insightful observations and suggestions for future research regarding stock returns on customer satisfaction. They have also provided a series of assessments of a study by Fornell, Morgeson, and Hult (2016) that focus on abnormal returns on customer satisfaction. Building on the original study, as well as the two commentaries and previous research, the study's authors argue that the published empirical evidence is quite consistent in favor of abnormal returns on customer satisfaction. These findings are also supported by the new analysis of Sorescu and Sorescu, who make several important contributions, not only regarding the persistence of abnormal returns over and beyond the technology sector but also with respect to the critical importance of industry classification in the context of customer satisfaction-something that definitely calls for more research attention. In fact, there are many avenues for future research on the economic and financial impact of customer satisfaction, as laid out in the commentaries, the authors' original article, and this response.

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Adjusting the warm glow thermostat: How incentivizing participation in voluntary green programs moderates their impact on service satisfaction Journal of Marketing


In Study 1, the authors find that people are more satisfied with a service experience when they choose to participate in the provider's voluntary green program (e.g., recycling)-an effect mediated by the "warm glow" of participation. The downside, however, is that this same mechanism decreases satisfaction among people who choose not to participate. In Study 2, analysis of data from the J.D. PowerGuest Satisfaction Index suggests that incentivizing the program (i.e., compensating the program participants) paradoxically increases satisfaction for those who do not participate but decreases satisfaction among those who do. Studies 3 and 4 explore how manipulating incentive characteristics might enable managers to maximize satisfaction for both groups. Study 3 indicates that, compared with no incentive, an "other-benefiting" incentive increases warm glow and satisfaction for green program participants but decreases them among nonparticipants. Study 4, however, suggests that mixed incentive bundles (i.e., providing both self-benefiting and other-benefiting options)maximize warm glow and satisfaction for both groups-the ideal outcome for managers.

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Assessing performance outcomes in marketing Journal of Marketing


Research in marketing has increasingly focused on building knowledge about how firms' marketing contributes to performance outcomes. A key precursor to accurately diagnosing the value firms' marketing creates is conceptualizing and operationalizing appropriate ways to assess performance outcomes. Yet, to date, there has been little conceptual development and no systematic examination of how researchers in marketing should conceptualize and measure the performance outcomes associated with firms' marketing. The authors develop a theory-based performance evaluation framework and examine the assessment of such performance outcomes in 998 empirical studies published in the top 15 marketing journals from 1981 through 2014. The results reveal a large number of different performance outcome measures used in prior empirical research that may be only weakly related to one another, making it difficult to synthesize findings across studies. In addition, the authors identify significant problems in how performance outcomes in marketing are commonly conceptualized and operationalized. They also reveal several theoretically and managerially important performance areas in which empirical knowledge of marketing's impact is limited or absent. Finally, they examine the implications of the results, provide actionable guidelines for researchers, and suggest a road map for systematically improving research practice in the future.

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Innovativeness: Its antecedents and impact on business performance Industrial Marketing Management


In this study, we address three research questions:(1) Why are some industrial firms more innovative than others?(2) What effect does innovativeness has on business performance?(3) Does the linkage between innovativeness and business performance depend on the environmental context? Accordingly, we draw on various theoretical perspectives to develop hypotheses that propose market orientation, entrepreneurial orientation, and learning orientation as key antecedents to innovativeness, as well as a ...

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Assessing the effects of quality, value, and customer satisfaction on consumer behavioral intentions in service environments Journal of Retailing


The following study both synthesizes and builds on the efforts to conceptualize the effects of quality, satisfaction, and value on consumers' behavioral intentions. Specifically, it reports an empirical assessment of a model of service encounters that simultaneously considers the direct effects of these variables on behavioral intentions. The study builds on recent advances in services marketing theory and assesses the relationships between the identified constructs across multiple service industries. Several competing theories are ...

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