Alec Hopkins

 |  May 16, 2024

I’ve spent my career in the food industry, now reaching 28 years. I began my career at General Mills, where I spent 22 years in R&D across multiple product platforms and leadership roles in the US and internationally. In 2018 I started a small consulting business helping startups find the best opportunities for growth at the interface between the consumer, technology and business. That led to a role as VP, Product and Insights at Opopop, a startup in the popcorn category, primarily in the DTC space. There I led innovation, commercialization and quality as Head of Product. Sitting on the senior leadership team, I had the opportunity to add on management and finance responsibilities, providing rigor on execution and structure behind strategies. I’m back to consulting now, helping small companies grow. I’d love to give back and help teams who are building businesses for a purpose beyond profit.

What area(s) of focus would you most like to address with your mentees?

Help them understand and solve challenges in product development, consumer insights, or business model creation.

How do you plan to structure your monthly meetings?

I’ve been a formal mentor a number of times at General Mills; the structure depends on the need. But potentially: Start with intro session to understand different folks’ interests and needs. Potentially follow with meetings focused on each topic. Pull in my network when it makes sense to have a guest expert for the group to talk with. Homework is an interesting idea I’d integrate if it’s a fit with their questions.

Finally, who would be an ideal mentee for you in this program, given your areas of expertise and experience?

I believe that understanding creates opportunity. The best fit for me are people who are trying to deeply understand the underlying dynamics of their business. That’s their product, their consumer and their business model. I’m most interested in people/companies that are trying to make the world better rather than a pure profit motive.