Online Business Courses to Improve Your Professional Skills

So, should you enroll in an MBA program or take one of these online business courses? Great question; I’ve given it a lot of thought.

In 2020, the only outcome a prestigious full-time MBA program can guarantee is a six-figure bank account debit.

Full-time tuition at the best schools is well over $200,000. That figure excludes the opportunity cost of taking a two-year break from work, as well as the interest on any debts you may take out.

Prior to COVID, on-campus career fairs and on-site employer visits were the primary perks of MBA programs. However, given the current situation of the planet, such events are no longer possible. Traditional business school recruiters are nowhere to be seen. MBA positions are disappearing at an alarming rate.

While I don’t think an MBA is worth it anymore, investing in building your business skills has never been more important.

And with a computer, Internet connection, and the right online business course, you can replicate (and even exceed) the knowledge and network an MBA program promises — at a fraction of the cost.  

So, let’s get you started! We put together a summary of the 10 best online business courses:

10 Best Online Business Courses

1. Finance 

Basic finance skills are important for everyone. It’s crucial to understand how the bottom line works and how you and your team play into it. You don’t need to be an accounting pro, but knowing the fundamentals is key.

In this course, dive into uncovering profitability drains, justifying purchases, interpreting financial reports, and adequately demonstrating your value and ROI to your boss — something every single employee should be able to do.

2. Strategy & Business Management 

Do you want to build a comprehensive business skill set? Is networking and career support really important to you? Good news: The brushwork Business Intensive teaches eight core business skills while also building your network.

You’ll work on projects such as refining and testing a business concept, creating a McKinsey-caliber presentation, analyzing financial reports, developing a business strategy, crafting a marketing and sales plan, conducting user interviews, building a no-code website, and more during this two-month course.

Former Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang, PayPal Founding COO David Sacks, Ellevest Cofounder and CEO Sallie Krawcheck, and Peloton Cofounder Graham Stanton are among the weekly guest speakers.

The Business Intensive is a terrific method to shift from a passive consumer of business knowledge to an active business leader with a well-rounded skill set and network, as it is 100 percent active learning. The Company Intensive is a comprehensive business management program.

3. Negotiation

 From term sheets to your salary, to getting the best possible discount on your new car — good negotiating skills will help you get exactly what you want (and deserve), both professionally and personally.

Learn how to craft strategic arguments that yield optimal results. Plus, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to practice and receive invaluable feedback. 

 4. Productivity

Don’t let all of your business skills go to waste due to a lack of time management and productivity prowess. Get better at setting goals, prioritizing tasks, managing your schedule, and delegating strategically.

Everyone has their own time management barriers, and this course will help you overcome each one by introducing you to several productivity tricks and tools.

5. Marketing

Digital marketing skills are in high demand. And though many of us are quite technologically savvy, digital marketing is not nearly as easy as it seems. Rather, it’s quite complex and involves several different strategies and moving parts.

Get up to speed on omnichannel marketing, marketing analytics, social media strategy, customer retention, and more. By the end, you’ll be able to overcome the “digital skills gap” many traditional marketers face today.

6. Sales and Business Development

Do you think you know what it takes to be successful in a sales career? You might be surprised at what the real answer is.

This course will educate you more about active and passive buyers, capturing buyers’ attention and creating connections, and the crucial role of understanding the buyer’s context and perspective, no matter where you are in your sales career.

Start closing more deals today.

7. Public Speaking

Everyone needs to be able to speak in front of a group. They’ll help you build the confidence to present a presentation to a customer, communicate with your team about corporate transformations, and speak up in any meeting. Reduce your fear of speaking and boost your communication abilities for good.
What’s more, the best aspect of this course is… There’s a sizable virtual reality component where you can practice speaking in a number of simulated environments, such as an auditorium or a board room. 

8. Branding

A strong brand identity is a key to a company’s success. Just look at timeless brands like Coca-Cola, Apple, and Disney, and newer companies like Allbirds, Warby Parker, and Glossier.

A solid brand tells a company’s story in a way that connects with customers, draws them in, and keeps them coming back for a long time. Learn all the branding tips and tricks you need.

9. Project Management

This is the perfect way to prepare for the Project Management Professional (PMP) exam, the gold standard in the field. But it’s still incredibly valuable even if a certification isn’t in your future.

Learn the ins and outs of the core competencies project managers need, including successfully managing people across teams, so you can seamlessly take projects from zero to completion.

10. Design

 Basic graphic design abilities are really useful to have, whether you want to create a logo, event notices, or attractive backgrounds for your website. 

Learn how to use three of the top design tools — Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign — and how to use them for both print and digital projects in this Bootcamp. All on your own, take your branding and marketing materials to the next level. 

Brushwork co-learning company that provides innovative business education, is co-founded and led by Paulina Karpis. Thousands of millennial professionals are educated each year through brunch works online business management class, membership, and popular newsletter. 

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