Stanford GSB Dean’s Twitter Mantle Stolen

Rich Lyons

Rich Lyons
Dean
U.C. Berkeley Haas School of Business

Handle: richlyons
Total Tweets: 3,088
Followers: 6,946
Follows: 174

Started Tweeting: July 3, 2009

From his tweets, it’s evident that Lyons takes a strong interest in Cal Bears football. It’s tempting to envision Lyons sitting at his computer tallying up Twitter followers before jumping up and cheering his own victory over Saloner, but if his Twitter feed is any indication, he may have more important things to do. He’s one of the few deans to coin and post his own maxims, and even those of his wife, Jen. “The world is more entrepreneurial,” Lyons tweeted recently. And quoting Jen, he posted, “The world is hungry for people to lead.” Lyons also tweets words of wisdom from outside his own brain and household, including a comment from an unnamed Haas “alum and serial entrepreneur” who lamented, “One of the biggest mistakes in life was not spending more time with engineers. Lyons began tweeting on July 3, 2009, when he wrote simply: “In today and it’s gloriously quiet. Working on three-pager, “Berkeley-Haas: Who We Are.” Our 10 most defining characteristics. Great fun.” Lyons’ tweets tell you who he’s meeting with, what he’s reading, and what he’s thinking. Reading his short spurts of messages, you’re likely to find out all kinds of interesting things, such as the fact that in 2010 the Haas School became self-funding without support from the state of California. And just in case you were thinking there couldn’t be a little bit of cowboy hippie in a B-school dean, Lyons has tweeted that one of his favorite songs is “Jessica” by the Allman Brothers.

Lyons gives eight top reasons why he tweets:

1) As a Dean, I get exposed to fascinating new ideas every day–a kind of idea-clearinghouse role. I enjoy the educational part of getting those ideas out to a broader audience.

2) Our school is breaking new ground on several fronts and tweeting is a helpful way to get the word out.

3) Tweeting helps me stay in even closer touch with our students. Not all of them follow me, to be sure, but those who do often mention the added connection they feel.

4) Tweeting helps me stay in closer touch with other people who are important to the school. For example, long-time Berkeley-Haas Professor Dave Aaker, who recently retired. Dave just published another book. I tweeted about it. As a result, he and I have had several twitter-based exchanges that would not otherwise have occurred.

5) Tweeting helps in the continuing effort to sharpen the narrative of our school. I lean into areas that are fundamental to our reputation.

6) Tweeting takes very little time. When I became Dean in 2008, I was encouraged to blog to get my ideas out. I found I just could not find the time to do so consistently. At that time, I had never used twitter. At 140 characters a pop, this became a happy marriage.

7) Tweeting about upcoming events or industry panels/conferences helps me keep alumni and donors engaged and excited about their alma mater.

8) Tweeting is a chance to (try to) be funny. One day I tweeted from my cell-phone that I was having a very good hair day. I should add, though, that within a couple hours one of my direct reports called to see if perhaps my phone had been stolen.

 

Santiago Iniguez

Santiago Iniguez
Dean
IE Business School in Madrid, Spain

Handle: SantiagoIniguez
Total Tweets: 2,143
Followers: 3,928
Follows: 361

Started Tweeting: May 28, 2007

The first dean for an elite global business school to begin tweeting, back in May of 2007, Iniguez has become quite prolific, with more than 2,000 tweets. And if there’s an elite of B-school deans who tweet well, Iniguez would be in it, along with Darden’s Bruner and Haas’ Lyons. Iniguez tweets across a global range, covering topics from French culture to management issues in Shanghai. Mixing Spanish and English tweets fairly equally, he keeps his output fairly highbrow, even linking to his discussion on learning strategic intent from Moby Dick. Keen on the digital world, he tweets on digital technology in relation to both business school and business. The liveliness and audience-relevance of Iniguez’ Twitter feed is well captured by his post on the gift of Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations to $9 billion med-tech startup founder Elizabeth Holmes from her father.