Apple has launched a new internal training project in the wake of Steve Jobs passing. The new project, called Apple University, was carefully created with input from Steve Jobs, and seeks to train Apple executives to take advantage of the principles that made Apple so successful.
As the LA Times reports, Apple has been working on this program since 2009, hiring Yale School of Management dean Joel Podolny to run an internal group featuring business professors and Harvard veterans to prepare Apple employees for how to manage Apple after Jobs passed away.
Steve Jobs reportedly considered Apple University to be a vital program for ensuring Apple’s future, and assembled the team of experts, Podolny included, to provide the best possible training for company executives to ensure that the transition at Apple would go smoothly.
In designing the program, Jobs reportedly identified specific principles that he felt were responsible for Apple’s success, including accountability, attention to detail, perfectionism, simplicity, and secrecy. Jobs reportedly personally oversaw the creation of the training courses, and instituted a similar corporate university model at Pixar.
The report cites a former Apple executive in describing the program:
Steve was looking to his legacy. The idea was to take what is unique about Apple and create a forum that can impart that DNA to future generations of Apple employees. No other company has a university charged with probing so deeply into the roots of what makes the company so successful.
Podolny was personally influenced by Steve Jobs and Apple, and stated that the first computer program he ever wrote was written on an Apple II. In his farewell letter to Yale students and faculty, Podolny wrote, “While there are many great companies, I cannot think of one that has had as tremendous personal meaning for me as Apple”.