The most popular business school professors are good teachers, plain and simple. They’re not rock stars, CEOs or celebrity researchers. Their names may not look familiar. But they’ve earned a place in the hearts and minds of their students by bringing to life accounting, finance and management, learning their names and helping them find jobs. Their students come first and it shows.
To determine which professors at the Top 30 U.S. full-time MBA programs were most popular, Bloomberg Businessweek used surveys sent to 2010 graduates asking them to identify their two favorites. Professors were ranked in order of absolute popularity. In all, the responses of 3,732 students were used to calculate this ranking; only schools that had more than 60 student responses were counted. At least one in every five survey respondents from each of the schools listed wrote down these names chosen for our top ten list as their favorite professor—pretty amazing considering they had hundreds of faculty members to choose from. Read on after the jump for the list.
1. Aswath Damodaran
Finance professor at New York University Stern School of Business
A seven-time recipient of Stern's "Professor of the Year" award, Damodaran practices open-source teaching, posting almost all his class materials on his blog. He's also one of the few business school professors to have inspired a tribute video on Youtube; the video spoofs pop star Justin Bieber's Never Say Never movie trailer. In the 89-second clip, the handiwork of a student, Damodaran proclaims "I want to be the Lady Gaga of finance." He has more than 4,000 followers on Twitter.
Ahuja ran a stoneware distribution business and designed educational board games while an undergraduate in his native India before enrolling at Ross in 1991 for his Ph.D., his MA and his MBA. He never left. The corporate strategy professor stresses the importance of integrity and generosity in his lectures - values he says were handed down from his mother and grandmother. Ahuja also oversees the school's chapter of Net Impact, a national organization dedicated to using the power of business to improve society and the environment.
Nolen has been on the faculty at his alma mater since 1980. In that time he has built up legions of fans. Former students describe him as a world-class storyteller (complete with a Texas accent) who brings his own experience as a small-business consultant to bear in lectures. Nolen's skills extend beyond the classroom: He "places more students than career services," says one former student, Q Beck.