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Apple U. taps more academia

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in Leaders & Managers,Management Training

Never happy with convention, Steve Jobs created Apple University to mold MBAs in his company’s image.

His first hire was Joel Podolny, dean of the Yale School of Management, in 2008. Podolny then hired Harvard University’s Richard Tedlow, a leading business historian, who left swiftly and quietly after 23 years to join Apple full time in 2011.

Now Apple has hired the Norwegian Morten Hansen, a rising star at UC Berkeley’s School of Information and co-author with Jim Collins of the 2011 best-seller Great by Choice.

Hansen reportedly turned down Apple once before because he was still working on the book, and when approached again last year, accepted the post without another interview and started at Apple in January.

What Hansen found at Apple was “many talented people,” he says. “It’s not like it was just Steve Jobs.”

He also found an engineering company that could use some help in management. Of 70,000 employees, he figures 800 are current or future leaders.

He’s working now with an elite group that he describes as “the best there is” at Apple.

— Adapted from “Apple University hires another high-profile academic,” Philip Elmer-DeWitt, CNN/Money.

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