Dyson Goes to School on Innovation & Shopping

The Wall Street Journal: “This fall, James Dyson launched the Dyson Institute of Engineering and Technology in Malmesbury, England, where his company is based. Students—there are currently 33, with plans to grow to around 200—are paid to work for the company three days a week. Two days a week they go to classes on Dyson’s corporate campus, in subjects such as electronics and mechanical engineering. (The company covers tuition.) Students work toward a bachelor of engineering degree from the University of Warwick, whose professors teach the classes.”

About innovation, Dyson comments: “You can’t ask your customers to tell you what to do next. They don’t know. That’s our job.”

Dyson also “is opening his company’s first stores in the U.S. One opened Nov. 30 in San Francisco and the second, on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue, will open Dec. 14 … It’s ‘an odd thing to do when so many people are buying things online,’ Mr. Dyson says. ‘You might say it’s counterculture to go rent a very expensive premises on Fifth Avenue, but we’re doing it almost precisely because of that.’ Mr. Dyson says that he wants to use the space to demonstrate how his products work and to learn how consumers interact with them. ‘It’s very difficult online and certainly in a normal store to explain what we’re doing’.”


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