A program is only as good as its faculty. That’s why hiring and retaining the very best faculty members is a primary goal at Mays Business School. For the 2009-2010 school year, ten full-time tenure/tenure-track faculty members have been added to the roster. They come from a variety of locations, from Greece to Pennsylvania, and have a wide range of research interests, from coworker relationships to e-commerce. What they all have in common is a dedication to their profession that distinguishes them from their peers.

Mays is pleased to welcome the following new professors.

Luis Gomez-Mejia

Luis Gomez-Mejia
Luis Gomez-Mejia

Professor of Management, initial holder of the Cocanougher Eminent Scholar Chair in Business
PhD: University of Minnesota
Recent Affiliation: Arizona State University

“I like to get students involved and to practice using real life cases. My philosophy is to be highly participative and Socratic. I bring my experience, as much as possible, into the classroom.”

Luis Gomez-Mejia’s career perfectly aligns with Texas A&M University’s emphasis on teaching, research, and service. As an educator for more than three decades, he has honed his classroom skills at a number of American universities as well as two universities in Spain, and has offered seminars in both Spanish and English around the world. In 2004, he was appointed as a Regents Professor at Arizona State University, making him (at that time) one of only two such professors in the university’s Carey College of Business.

With more than 100 publication credits to his name, Gomez-Mejia’s research has been varied, from management in high technology firms to socioemotional concerns within family firms. His current research focuses on the timely issue of executive compensation and how financial incentives may be used to motivate people at work. His research has appeared in top-tier publications and his books are used in business classrooms nationwide. His work has garnered much attention and praise, including a 2008 faculty research award from ASU, selection to the Academy of Management’s Hall of Fame, and a research fellowship granted by the Ministry of Education in Spain. In 2004, he also received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Minnesota; this recognition is extremely competitive since the recipient is chosen from among 300,000 graduates of the University of Minnesota.

Gomez-Mejia is highly active in his profession as well, serving as president and founder of the Iberoamerican Academy of Management, which covers Spain/Portugal, Latin America, and Hispanic faculty in U.S. universities. He has served two terms on the editorial board of the Academy of Management Journal and is editor and cofounder of Journal of High Technology Management Research and Journal of Management Research (the journal of the Iberoamerican Academy of Management).

In 2008, Gomez-Mejia was recognized for a lifetime of achievement with the title of Doctor Honoris Causa at Universidad Carlos III, Madrid. This is the most prestigious and highly competitive award provided by the university to external professors; candidates in any field in any part of the world are eligible for the award.

His interest in management as a discipline began when Gomez-Mejia worked as a consultant for Control Data Corporation in the 1970s. “My background was in economics and I was interested in macroeconomic policies and their effect on poverty but later I developed an appreciation for business issues at the organizational level,” he says. He taught evening courses at the University of Minnesota while working full-time, arousing his interest in teaching and research. At that time, he says he started to see research as a means to solve real-life issues as he realized how decisions could be improved by having more information. “I also learned to appreciate the proverb that “there is nothing more practical than a good theory,'” he said. That revelation spurred him on to doctoral studies and a long career in higher education.

At A&M, Gomez-Mejia will teach international management courses at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels. “And I do expect to devote a large amount of time to research,” he says, “often spilling into the evenings and weekends as I truly love the process of discovery.”

Dan S. Chiaburu

Assistant Professor of Management
PhD: Pennsylvania State University
Recent Affiliation: Pennsylvania State University

“Being conversational and focusing on concrete situations are great inroads into getting the students’ attention. My classroom experience is a continuous movement between the conceptual and the concrete.”

Coworkers: some are fantastic, others you can’t stand, but they all impact your work. In fact, according to research from Dan Chiaburu and a coauthor, the effect of a colleague on a worker’s role perceptions, job attitudes, absenteeism, turnover, and performance is greater than that of a supervisor. The findings suggest that the strongest coworker effects are for how much employees come to understand the requirements of, and get deeply engaged in or reduce their effort toward, their tasks. Also, bad is stronger than good; that is, the impact of a negative coworker is greater than the encouragement of a positive one.

Chiaburu’s research is focused primarily on relationships and behaviors in the workplace. His recent work appeared or is in press in the Academy of Management Best Papers Proceedings, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of International Business Studies, Journal of Vocational Behavior, and the Handbook of Social Resource Theory.

A certified senior human resource professional, Chiaburu received the Excellence in Research-to-Practice Award from the American Society for Training and Development in 2004.

Chiaburu has served as an ad-hoc reviewer for several journals and was selected as an Outstanding Reviewer by the Academy of Management in 2007.

Subodha Kumar

Subodha Kumar
Subodha Kumar

Assistant Professor of Information Systems and Operations Management
PhD: University of Texas, Dallas
Recent Affiliation: University of Washington

“I believe that my responsibility as a teacher is to provide knowledge that will help students in achieving their business goals. Hence, I want to develop critical thinking and problem-solving strategies in students.”

Subodha Kumar is interested in increasing efficiency through his research, which focuses on diverse areas such as e-commerce, mobile commerce, software development and maintenance, and information technology.

He currently has 13 papers in respected publications such as Management Science, Information Systems Research, Production and Operations Management, Journal of Management Information Systems, IIE Transactions, European Journal of Operational Research, and IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering. He has a number of papers still in the process of being published. In addition to his publishing activity, Kumar is also a patent holder, as he worked with a team to develop a robotic system control.

Kumar has both education and industry experience. He has taught for the past few years at the University of Washington, winning awards for the quality of his instruction. He came to academia after working as an engineer for Tata Engineering and Locomotive Company (India), and as a research assistant and scientist for FSI International (Dallas, Texas).

Kumar currently serves as the senior editor of Productions and Operations Management Journal. He is also a member of the editorial review board of Journal of Database Management.

Shagun Pant

Shagun Pant
Shagun Pant

Assistant Professor of Finance
PhD: University of Utah
Recent Affiliation: University of Utah

“My teaching strategy is student centric…The course is designed to encourage dialogue and foster innovative thinking.”

What is the market value of the right to vote embedded in common stocks? It all depends, says research from Shagun Pant and colleagues. They find that the value of the vote is an increasing function of the expected life of the stock. Quantitatively, they estimate the market value of the right to vote during a year as 5.4 percent. However, the value of the vote increases around special meetings and around M&A events.

It’s this sort of empirical response to theoretical questions that impact the way business is conducted that appeals to Pant, who says she first became interested in studying finance while completing a master’s degree in information systems. “I was particularly intrigued by the quantitative nature of finance, and the possibility of using mathematical formalism in gaining insights about complex financial issues,” she said. Her research focuses on corporate governance and issues related to corporate voting rights.

She has presented her research at numerous conferences in the U.S. and abroad. She has refereed work for Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis and Annals of Finance.

Her work is about more than just research. “I enjoy teaching and interacting with students,” says Pant. “I believe that teaching completes the intellectual experience of an academician.” At Mays, Pant will teach an advanced corporate finance class for undergraduates.

Olga Perdikaki

Olga Perdikaki
Olga Perdikaki

Assistant Professor of Information and Operations Management
PhD: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Recent Affiliation: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

“An ideal teacher embraces teaching as an opportunity to inspire, encourage, cultivate curiosity, and empower the individuals who enter the classroom to take responsibility for their learning.”

Her father’s job at a grocery store warehouse in Athens first piqued Olga Perdikaki’s interest in operations management and business. She was fascinated with the details he would share about his work. This led to internships in retail and a continuing interest in how businesses function.

Perdikaki’s research falls under retail operations and focuses on understanding the impact of retailers’ activities that are geared towards improving customer valuation on retailers’ profitability. In addition, she is interested in the temporal management of investments in demand-enhancing activities in the face of demand uncertainty and competition. Perdikaki’s research also examines store performance and specifically the effect of store labor and customer traffic on different performance metrics.

Honored with an outstanding Graduate Teaching Award and a Dissertation Completion Fellowship Award from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Perdikaki walks a fine line as both instructor and researcher. Perdikaki has three papers in progress and has presented her research at several conferences. Currently, she serves as an ad-hoc referee for European Journal of Operational Research and Production and Operations Management.

Michelle Chandler Diaz

Michelle Chandler Diaz
Michelle Chandler Diaz

Clinical Assistant Professor of Accounting
PhD: Texas A&M University
Recent Affiliation: Louisiana State University

“I love working with students. It is one of the reasons I decided to begin an academic career and it is an extremely important part of my role as a clinical professor. My approach in the classroom continues to evolve.”

How can managers frame the implementation of new technology so that employees are more likely to learn and use it? Which of the employee’s personality factors will affect adoption of the new technology? These are questions Michelle Chandler Diaz has explored in her research, which has focused on accountants’ use of technology as well as the judgment and decision-making practices of auditors. Diaz’s work has appeared in International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, and is forthcoming in The Accounting Review and International Journal of Accounting Information Systems.

Her current research projects examine auditor internal control assessments, the effect of ease of use of technology on audit professionals, and mentor-protégé relationships within the accounting field.
Diaz brings to her students a wealth of practical examples based on her five years in commercial auditing as a CPA. Diaz says that she prefers to teach via interactive lessons, role-playing, and hands-on experiences in addition to lecturing.

Since earning her PhD from Texas A&M in 2005, Diaz has been active in her profession. Her papers have been presented at numerous conferences and invited workshops and she has served as an ad-hoc reviewer for several publications and organizations.

Lisa C. Troy

Lisa C. Troy
Lisa C. Troy

Clinical Assistant Professor of Marketing
PhD: Texas A&M University
Recent affiliation: Texas A&M University

“I like to bring research into the classroom whenever possible so the students see the relevance of what they are studying. I also use research in the classroom to develop and reinforce critical thinking and analytical skills.”

What is the relationship between innovativeness and new product success? How does the performance of a chief marketing officer impact the company? What elements contribute to customer satisfaction and what role does it play in new product development? These are the questions Lisa Troy examines through her research in the field of marketing.

Troy’s research draws on her experience in both industry and academia. She worked for several years for Exxon Company, USA, as a financial analyst in their marketing and production department. She has also taught at University of North Texas and Utah State University. In 2008 she served at Texas A&M as a visiting professor.

In the upcoming year, Troy is excited to be teaching advertising and creative marketing communication and a course on advanced advertising, which will prepare a select group of students to compete in a national advertising campaign case competition.

Troy was recently selected to receive a teaching innovation grant from the Texas A&M Center for Teaching Excellence. She has been recognized numerous times for her teaching and research quality. In addition to her academic duties, Troy serves as an advisor to the American Advertising Federation student organization at Mays.

Madhav Pappu

Madhav Pappu
Madhav Pappu

Clinical Assistant Professor of Information and Operations Management
PhD: University of Tennessee
Recent affiliation: Uurva Consultants, LLC, and MACOM Technology Solutions

“Involving your students is critical…If you involve students from the first day and they believe that you truly want their input, you’ll find the classroom much more enriching.”

Madhav Pappu’s academic interest has taken him far… All around the world, in fact. Pappu, who teaches supply chain, says he’s always been interested in travel and transportation. After earning an undergraduate degree in marine engineering, Pappu spent nine years as a sailor, building on his knowledge of how transportation systems work. He returned to school to study transportation engineering, followed by an MBA in strategic management with an emphasis in logistics and transportation, the area in which he also completed his PhD.

His variety of educational experience has made him a versatile instructor: he has taught marketing and engineering courses, in addition to his current position in Information and Operations Management.
Pappu reports that his students love it when he gets carried away telling stories about his international experiences—and that’s quite alright, as his stories are about supply chain and information management in the real world. Pappu’s current research focus is on new applications for radio frequency identification (RFiD) technology. He is most interested in how the technology could be applied in different ways to improve efficiency in the supply chain.

Pappu’s research has appeared in several publications, including Journal of Marketing Channels and Journal of International Consumer Marketing. He has also presented at seminars and conferences all over the globe.

Cindi Smatt

Cindi Smatt
Cindi Smatt

Clinical Assistant Professor of Information and Operations Management
PhD: Florida State University
Recent Affiliation: Florida State University

“For students to optimize the learning experience, they must feel comfortable with their teachers and believe that their teachers truly care about their welfare.”

How is knowledge—the most valuable asset in business—created, distributed, and exchanged? How is that process altered by technology? These are the questions Cindi Smatt examines as she studies the intersection of digital and social networking and its relationship to knowledge management. Her findings suggest that though it is intended to increase the effectiveness of knowledge exchange, technology may actually inhibit the exchange of certain types of information, as it can diminish the personal contact that is often required for exchange of more complex knowledge. Smatt strives to understand how technology affects the exchange of different types of knowledge, and how an individual’s position in the knowledge network affects his or her performance.

Smatt says her focus on interpersonal relationships and business efficiency stems from her years working in her family’s businesses, including a supermarket, a security company, and a shopping center. She discovered her love of teaching as a graduate student. In her classroom, Smatt is concerned with more than just teaching her subject matter (Introduction to Information Systems); she hopes to encourage critical and ethical thought that will have an impact on the industry via her students.

Smatt has several articles in print or forthcoming in publications such as Journal of Information Technology and Information Management. She has also authored a book chapter on social network analysis and has presented at a number of conferences.

Sudarsan Rangan

Sudarsan Rangan
Sudarsan Rangan

Clinical Assistant Professor of Information and Operations Management
PhD: The University of Alabama
Recent Affiliation: The University of Alabama

“My primary objective as a teacher is to provide for a stimulating learning environment in my classes to develop and nourish critical and creative thinking in students.”

“The best solution to any given problem is the simplest possible solution.” This is the essence of operations management, says Sudarsan Rangan. This phrase is always in his mind as he examines issues in his field. His current research examines supply contracts between parties with varying risk preferences, with the aim of creating a practical contract framework for the industry. His other research interests include supply risk management, operations strategy and revenue management, operations in emerging economies, and pricing and purchasing decision analysis. He has presented his research at a number of conferences.

At Mays, Rangan teaches Statistical Methods to undergraduates in addition to his research. Excellence in the classroom is as important to Rangan as research: as a graduate student, he won two teaching awards for his dedication to his students and discipline, and his students have ranked him highly in course evaluations. His classroom philosophy is simple: “Learning results from what the student does and thinks and only from what the student does and thinks. The teacher can advance learning only by influencing what the student does to learn,” he says.

In addition to his degrees in Operations Management, Rangan also holds degrees in electrical engineering.