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John Mullins

Associate Professor of Management Practice in Marketing and Entrepreneurship

  • BA (Lehigh), MBA (Stanford), PhD (Minnesota)

An award-winning teacher and scholar, Professor John W. Mullins brings 20 years of experience in high-growth retailing firms to his teaching and research, including two ventures and one public offering, which he personally founded.

His research has won national and international awards from the Marketing Science Institute, the American Marketing Association, and the Richard D. Irwin Foundation. He is a frequent speaker to audiences in entrepreneurship and venture capital.

Professor Mullins earned his MBA at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota. Since becoming a professor in 1992, he has published four books, numerous cases and more than 40 articles in a variety of outlets, including Harvard Business Review, the MIT Sloan Management Review, and The Wall Street Journal.

His trade book, The New Business Road Test: What Entrepreneurs and Executives Should Do Before Launching a Lean Start-Up (4e, London: Prentice-Hall/FT 2013), is the definitive work on the assessment and shaping of entrepreneurial opportunities and is used in university courses worldwide.

Professor Mullins’ book on business models – the critically acclaimed Getting to Plan B: Breaking Through to a Better Business Model (Boston: Harvard Business Press 2009) – was named on “Best Books of 2009” lists by BusinessWeek and INC Magazine. The book was co-authored with Randy Komisar, a partner at the esteemed venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in California.

He has consulted with, and provided executive education, for a variety of organisations – both large and small  – on five continents, including: the Young Presidents Organisation, Endeavor, Kenya Airways, Merck-Serono, Grupo Guayacan, the European and African Venture Capital Associations, Pumpkin Ltd, and the International Finance Corporation, among numerous others. He has served on the boards of fast-growing entrepreneurial companies in the United States, United Kingdom, Europe, and Asia.

2014

Will My Idea Work?

Mullins J W

Business Strategy Review

Tell Me Why

Mullins J W

Business Strategy Review

2013

Use Customer Cash to Finance Your Start-up

Mullins J

Harvard Business Review

Why Banks Are No Use to Tech Start-Ups

Mullins J W

Wall Street Journal

Plan B to Start or Grow Your Business

Mullins J W

Business Strategy Review

2012

How Rock Solid Funded Growth

Mullins J W

Financial Times

What's Your Working Capital Model

Mullins J W; Komisar R

Se puede enseñar el emprendimento

Mullins J W

INCAE Business Review

Can Entrepreneurship Be Taught?

Mullins J W

Fickle Grey Beast Blog

2011

Marketing strategy: a decision-focused approach

Walker O; Mullins J; Boyd Jr H

Managing in ethically corrupt environments

Mullins J W; Rhodes T

Business Strategy Review

Measuring Up: Dashboarding for Innovators

Mullins J W

Business Strategy Review

A business plan? Or a journey to plan B?

Mullins J W

Sloan Management Review

Marketing

Mullins J W; Walker O C Jr.

2009

Dashboarding for innovators

Mullins J W; Komisar R

Business Strategy Review

A Capital Idea

Mullins J W

Business Strategy Review

Launching a new venture

Mullins J

Business Strategy Review

Why Business Plans Don't Deliver

Mullins J W

Wall Street Journal

2008

Entrepreneurially Fit

Mullins J W

ISB Insight

Marketing Strategy: A Decision-Focused Approach 6th eds.,

Walker O C JR; Mullins J W; Boyds H W JR; Larreche J

Fundamentally fit

Mullins J

Business Strategy Review

2007

Worth a second chance?

Mullins J; Farneti I; Hassan F; Johnson RM; Zott C

Harvard Business Review

Discovering unk-unks

Mullins J

Sloan Management Review

2006

Can we teach entrepreneurship?

Mullins J

Business Strategy Review

2005

Missing the boat or sinking the boat: a study of new venture decision-making

Mullins J; Forlani D

Journal of Business Venturing

Entrepreneurial gold mines

Mullins J

Business Strategy Review

Take the money - or run?

Mullins J; et al.

Harvard Business Review

Managing cash: what a difference the days make!

Mullins J; Churchill N

Business Horizons

2002

New product decision making: how chance and size of loss influence what marketing managers see and do

Mullins J; Forlani D; Walker O C Jr

Psychology and Marketing

2001

How fast can your company afford to grow?

Churchill N C; Mullins J

Harvard Business Review

2000

Pioneering practices for new product development at US West

Mullins J; Sittig S; Brown C

Marketing Management

Perceived risks and choices in entrepreneurs' new venture decisions

Mullins J; Forlani D

Journal of Business Venturing

The effects of organizational and decision-maker factors on new product risk taking

Mullins J; Forlani D; Walker O C Jr

Journal of Product Innovation Management

New product development in rapidly changing markets: an exploratory study

Mullins J; Sutherland D

Journal of Product Innovation Management

Customer Funded Business 2014

The Customer Funded Business

More than two generations ago, the venture capital community—VCs, business angels, incubators, and others—convinced the entrepreneurial world that writing business plans and raising venture capital constituted the twin centerpieces of entrepreneurial endeavor. They did so for good reasons: the sometimes astonishing returns they've delivered to their investors and the incredibly large and valuable companies that their ecosystem has created. But the vast majority of fastgrowing companies never take any venture capital. So where does the money come from to start and grow their companies? Or yours?

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NBRT2014

The New Business Road Test

What Entrepreneurs and Executives Should Do Before Writing a Business Plan
 
The New Business Road Test helps entrepreneurs and business professionals avoid impending disaster.  It shows them how to enhance their chances of winning customers and capital and actually achieve their entrepreneurial dreams!

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Getting to Plan B

Getting to Plan B

In Getting to Plan B, John Mullins and Randy Komisar present a field-tested process for rigorously stress-testing your initial business idea, and using the evidence you uncover to make swift corrections that tip the business equation in your favour.  Whether launching a new venture in the marketplace or inside your company, Getting to Plan B will help you replace assumptions with evidence - and vastly improve your odds of success.

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Research Interests

Opportunity assessment, business model innovation, venture capital, entrepreneurship in emerging markets.