John Mullins is an Associate Professor of Management Practice at the London Business School. He earned his MBA at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota. An award-winning teacher and scholar and one of the world’s foremost thought leaders in entrepreneurship, John brings to his teaching and research 20 years of executive experience in high-growth retailing firms, including two ventures he founded and one he took public.
Since becoming an entrepreneurship professor in 1992, John has published five books, dozens of cases and more than 50 articles in a variety of outlets, including Harvard Business Review, the MIT Sloan Management Review, and The Wall Street Journal. 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 and sought-after speaker and educator for audiences in entrepreneurship and venture capital.
John’s first trade book, The New Business Road Test: What Entrepreneurs and Executives Should Do Before Launching a Lean Start-Up (1e 2003; now 4e, London: Prentice-Hall/FT 2013), has become the definitive work on the assessment and shaping of entrepreneurial opportunities and is widely used by investors and entrepreneurs and in university courses worldwide.
His second book, the critically acclaimed Getting to Plan B: Breaking Through to a Better Business Model (Boston: Harvard Business Press 2009), co-authored with Randy Komisar, a partner at the esteemed venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, was named to “Best Books of 2009” lists by BusinessWeek and INC Magazine.
John’s newest book, The Customer-Funded Business: Start, Finance or Grow Your Business with Your Customers’ Cash, was named one of five “not-to-be-missed books” for 2014 by Fortune magazine. It challenges the widely held assumption that among an entrepreneur’s first and most important tasks is that of raising investment capital. Its material provides the foundation for his MOOC on Coursera.org, How to Finance and Grow Your Startup – Without VC.
John has done executive education on five continents for a variety of organizations both large and small, including the Young Presidents’ Organization, Endeavor, the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, Kenya Airways, Merck-Serono, 3M, the European and African Venture Capital Associations, and the IFC, among many others. He has served on the boards of fast-growing entrepreneurial companies in the United States, United Kingdom, Europe, and Asia.
Professor of Marketing
Dr Nader Tavassoli is the founding director of the Walpole Luxury Management Programme at London Business School. He received his PhD from Columbia Business School in 1994 and was on the faculty of the MIT Sloan School of Management until 2002. While there, he was faculty director of the Entrepreneurship Programme and founding faculty director of the e-Business Programme.
He has been non-executive chairman of The Brand Inside – inspiring brand-led change since 2006. In 2013, he co-founded Compaso; He is also an angel investor and advisor to Phigital and SoceanIQ. For the past 21 years, he has advised and taught executives from internet and high-tech start-ups to over 30 Global Fortune 500 companies.
Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour
Gillian Ku is Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour at London Business School, where she is also the Director of the Negotiations and Influencing for Senior Managers open programme. She received her PhD in Management and Organizations from the Kellogg School of Management. Prior to her doctoral studies, Gillian earned her bachelor’s degree at Harvard
University and worked at the Disney Corporation where she was a financial analyst for Disney’s international video distribution division.
Gillian’s internationally-recognised research is in the broad area of negotiations, decision-making, and interpersonal relationships. Specifically, her research has focused on the dynamics of emotionally-charged decision-making and she is currently investigating the decision-making processes involved in auction bidding and auction fever. She also has active research projects on perspective-taking and gender differences in a variety of domains. Gillian’s research has been widely published in the premier outlets of her field, including Harvard’s Negotiation Newsletter, Negotiation Journal, Harvard Business Review, Organizational Behaviour and Human Decision Processes, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, and Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Her research has also garnered international press coverage, including reports on auction behaviour at CNN, Chicago Tribune, New York Times Magazine, BusinessWeek.com, and The Telegraph.
Gillian’s award-winning teaching focuses on negotiations, decision-making, and leading teams. She teaches on London Business School’s full-time MBA and executive education programmes. She has also consulted worldwide for schools (e.g., Indian School of Business and Cyprus International Institute of Management) and organisations (e.g., Diageo, Roche, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation).
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