Yale SOM Deepens Its Bench, Adds Two Associate Deans

This news flew under the radar for many folks, but last week Yale SOM announced two key leadership appointments, drawing experienced administrators from two prominent international business schools.

Effective July 1, Anjani Jain will take office as senior associate dean for the school’s full-time MBA program. Jain comes from Wharton, where he currently serves as Vice Dean of MBA Programs for Executives. At Yale Jain will run much of the school’s day-to-day activities, overseeing SOM’s full-time MBA program, managing admissions, career development, and student and academic services.

In September, David Bach (who earned his B.A. from Yale in 1998) will become senior associate dean for executive MBA and global programs. He currently is the dean of programs at IE Business School in Madrid. He will wear several hats at Yale, running the school’s executive MBA program and the Master of Advanced Management degree program, while at the same time overseeing the school’s participation in the Global Network for Advanced Management, a network of global MBA programs which launched this year.

What’s most interesting is that this is very similar to the playbook that Snyder employed at Chicago Booth. Rather than only focusing on trying to attract superstar professors from other MBA programs, he’s building out the school’s leadership. At Booth he created multiple new posts and attracted some strong leadership to bolster the program, often going outside the higher education space to find the best talent. A school needs a strong leader to move forward, but a strong leader needs a good team to put his bold plans in motion.

At the time, a Chicago Booth insider explained this strategy to us and compared it to how an NFL football team has a salary cap that limits how much the team can spend on the on-field talent. But, a team is far more flexible in terms of how much it can spend on front office people, coaches, and assistants. Not every player will be an all star, but if the coaching staff is chock full of all stars, they can give the team a big competitive advantage.

If we’re losing you with the sports metaphor, don’t worry. Just take note of how it looks like Snyder is doing the same thing he did at Booth, which helped that school noticeably move ahead in the rankings over the past decade. And it speaks volumes that he’s been able to lure some big-name talent to New Haven with his vision for Yale SOM (good pay probably doesn’t hurt, either). If we were gamblers, we’d bet on Ted Snyder to make waves once again in the coming decade. It doesn’t necessarily impact your application strategy today, or what your classroom experience might be like at Yale if you matriculate next year, but don’t be surprised if you see Yale move up from being a school that’s consistently ranked right around #10 to one that’s firmly in the top 10, and maybe even knocking on the door of the top five MBA programs.

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