Dr. Tomas Hult is the Byington Endowed Chair of International Marketing, Professor of Marketing and International Business, and Director of the 28-person International Business Center (IBC) in the Broad College of Business at Michigan State University.
MSU's International Business Center is a strategic affiliate of the US Department of Commerce and Dr. Hult serves on the affiliated US District Export Council. The Center is also designated by the US Department of Education as one of only 15 national resource centers (CIBER) in the country. Dr. Hult has been the Executive Director of the Academy of International Business (AIB) since 2004 – the world’s leading professional organization in international business.
Dr. Hult was selected the Academy of Marketing Science / CUTCO-Vector Distinguished Marketing Educator as the 2016 top marketing professor in the world for scholarly career achievements. He is also an elected Fellow of the Academy of International Business (one of 103 scholars in the world bestowed with this honor and one of only 6 marketing scholars). Overall, Dr. Hult is top-ranked in the world by scholarly citations, per Google Scholar, in marketing strategy, international marketing, and supply chain management. He is also the top-cited scholar in Michigan State University's Broad College of Business.
His work has been recognized by the MSU Broad College with the Richard L. Lewis Quality of Excellence (The Lewis award is a “service” recognition given to faculty who have provided exemplary leadership to advance the mission of the college). At Michigan State University, Dr. Hult has also been recognized with the Beal Outstanding Faculty Award 2019 (MSU's highest award "for outstanding total service to the University").
Professor Hult regularly speaks at high profile events (e.g., United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, World Investment Forum, European Commission, Swedish Entrepreneurship Forum) and writes influential op-ed articles at the intersection of international trade and policy (e.g., The Hill, Time, Fortune, World Economic Forum, The Conversation).
Some of his co-authored business trade books include Second Shift, featured in a "Talks at Google" about General Motors, and Global Supply Chain Management. He is also co-author of several academic textbooks, including the #1 market-share leading Global Business Today and International Business "franchise" with Charles W. L. Hill (published by McGraw Hill Education).
Industry Expertise (4)
Areas of Expertise (8)
International Trade Policy
Supply Chain Management
CUTCO-Vector Distinguished Marketing Educator (professional)
2016 Awarded by the Academy of Marketing Science
University of Memphis: Ph.D., Marketing 1995
Murray State University: M.B.A., Marketing 1991
Fyrisskolan: M.S., Mechanical Engineering 1987
- 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
globalEDGE Business Beat
Michigan Business Network online
globalEDGE Business Beat, hosted by Tomas Hult, covers discussions with a wide range of global leaders in business, government, and academe to provide information on the latest thoughts, tools, and markets that are flourishing globally.
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.
Beat the Stock Market by Satisfying Customers
“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...
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.
Companies Can Succeed During a Global Economic Crisis, Says MSU Study
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...
Marketing Creates Value in Supply Chains, Says 50 Years of Research
“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.”...
Community Colleges Expected to Triple Efforts to internationalize
“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...
Journal Articles (7)
An abnormally abnormal intangible: Stock returns on customer satisfactionJournal of Marketing
2016 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.
Adjusting the warm glow thermostat: How incentivizing participation in voluntary green programs moderates their impact on service satisfactionJournal of Marketing
2016 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.
Stock Returns on Customer Satisfaction Do Beat the Market: Gauging the Effect of a Marketing IntangibleAMA Journals
Claes Fornell, Forrest V. Morgeson III, and G. Tomas M. Hult
2016 A debate about whether firms with superior customer satisfaction earn superior stock returns has been persistent in the literature. Using 15 years of audited returns, the authors find convincing empirical evidence that stock returns on customer satisfaction do beat the market. The recorded cumulative returns were 518% over the years studied (2000–2014), compared with a 31% increase for the S&P 500. Similar results using back-tested instead of real returns were found in the United Kingdom. The effect of customer satisfaction on stock price is, at least in part, channeled through earnings surprises. Consistent with theory, customer satisfaction has an effect on earnings themselves. In addition, the authors examine the effect of stock returns from earnings on stock returns from customer satisfaction. If earnings returns are included among the risk factors in the asset pricing model, the earnings variable partially mitigates the returns on customer satisfaction. Because of the long time series, it is also possible to examine time periods when customer satisfaction returns were below market. The reversal of the general trend largely resulted from short-term market idiosyncrasies with little or no support from fundamentals. Such irregularities have been infrequent and eventually self-correcting. The authors provide reasons why irregularities may occur from time to time.
Assessing Performance Outcomes in MarketingAMA Journals
Constantine S. Katsikeas, Neil A. Morgan, Leonidas C. Leonidou, and G. Tomas M. Hult
2016 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.
Assessing performance outcomes in marketingJournal of Marketing
2015 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.
Innovativeness: Its antecedents and impact on business performanceIndustrial Marketing Management
2004 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 ...
Assessing the effects of quality, value, and customer satisfaction on consumer behavioral intentions in service environmentsJournal of Retailing
2000 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 ...