While product management is an exciting and stimulating field of work, it can be challenging in many ways. From working with multiple teams and defining and implementing strategies to ensuring customer satisfaction and taking on profit and loss responsibility, the day-to-day activities of a product manager can be a little on the stressful side.
And coupled with the mind-blowing pace at which technology is evolving and fierce competition in most – if not all – markets, product managers, now more than ever, need to kick ass (to put in bluntly) and try to stay ahead of the game.
I mean, let’s be honest, coordinating one team can be enough to make you want to sell your assets, move to an island, and rather sell cocktails on the beach for a living (that could just be me though), so we should all definitely give a round of applause and show some daily appreciation for our product managers. Without a product there is no business, so perhaps our PMs are the superheroes of the company. (I tried to come up with a cool superhero name for a PM, but I’ll leave that up to you.)
What Skills are Required for Product Management Today?
Here at Userlane, we write a lot on learning, development, growth, and skill acquisition. Constant learning and developing new skills in this day and age are as essential as soil, water, and sunlight are to a plant. The plant simply cannot grow and blossom without these elements, and it’s fundamentally the same for employees (in this case, product managers) who cannot grow and evolve in their profession and careers without learning new, important skills.
Over the years, product managers have had to develop and hone their soft skills, like leadership, innovation, and creativity, in order to become excellent product leaders. However, the hard skills are, of course, just as important, and many of these skills are continuously evolving. For example, PMs need to have technical expertise, and with technology developing the way it is, PMs need to learn both on the job and through courses to keep up.
As Julia Enthoven, who was an APM at Google, states, ‘Good PMs add to engineering teams … they understand technical constraint without needing to consult a teammate.’
Today, PMs also need to have a good knowledge of competitor products and internet trends. They need to engage with pioneering technologies, expose themselves to new industries and concepts, and seek out trends.
For those wanting to become a better PM (I’m sure that goes without saying), it’s important to gain experience in UX design, invest time in reading about new ideas and software, and practice skills like coding and writing. And while gaining hard skills is priority, developing soft skills, such as communication, being the product’s cheerleaders, and fostering excellent communication and organization skills, shouldn’t take the proverbial backseat either.
But not all skills can be learned on the job. You’ll need some external help from time to time. And because you, as a product manager, are super busy rocking your product, we’ve decided to compile a list of the top online courses to hone those already awesome product management skills of yours.
Whether you’re just starting out as a product manager, have years of experience, or work closely with the product team, we’ve got the courses to get you and keep you blossoming.
Make sure to bookmark this list of PM-related courses as we will be updating it over time. Also, if we have missed something, feel free to let us know!
Top Online Product Management Courses to Help You Make a Difference
Product Management Courses from Coursera
Aim: To identify the important information you need to develop a product and brand strategy that generates both quick-wins and long-term value.
What you’ll learn: Defining the right metrics, the product life cycle, how to equip your employees with knowledge on how to deliver on your brand promise, describe the different elements of a brand strategy, how to build your brand portfolio, how to embed a brand internally within your organization, and more.
Time/ Effort: Approximately 13 hours.
For: Product managers of all experience levels or those simply wanting to refresh their knowledge of brand management.
Includes: Flexible deadlines, videos, readings, quizzes, graded assignments with feedback, and shareable certificates.
Price: On request, but financial aid is available.
Aim: To learn important negotiation skills for business success.
What you’ll learn: Negotiation strategy, tactics for success, creating a contract, and important communication skills.
Time/Effort: 7 weeks (around 75 minutes per week).
For: Product managers looking to enhance their soft skills.
Includes: Videos, tests, self-paced learning, free negotiation planning tools, an exam for course completion, and a course certificate.
Price: 49 USD
Product Management Courses from edX
Aim: An online MicroMasters program in digital product management designed to teach you the techniques to manage the development, launch, and growth of digital products.
What you’ll learn: Product management with lean, agile, and system design thinking, social media marketing, digital innovation, business analytics, and more.
Time/Effort: 6-8 weeks per course (4-8 hours per week, per course)
For: Anyone looking for an immersive program in product management.
Includes: A team of highly qualified trainers from Boston University, 5 courses (Business & Management, Computer Science, Engineering, Data Analytics & Statistics, Economics & Finance).
Price: 900 USD
Aim: To learn what it takes to become an innovation leader in the 21st century.
What you’ll learn: How to become an innovation leader and create shared value, how to empower others, innovating for global impact, and development of self-awareness.
Time/Effort: 6 weeks (4 to 6 hours per week).
For: Product managers of all experience levels.
Includes: Course is offered by Bill George, professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology and former Medtronic Chair and CEO.
Price: Free or 40 USD for a verified certificate.
Aim: To gain insight into leading high-impact social, environmental, and personal transformation.
What you’ll learn: Leading change in business, self-knowledge, deep listening, precise observation, dialogue, and practices for creating institutional innovations that generate wellbeing in society.
Time/ Effort: 14 weeks (4 to 6 hours per week)
For: Introductory level (product managers of all experience levels as this is for soft skills development).
Includes: Top lecturers from MIT, leading professionals from the Presencing Institute, self-paced learning, videos, quizzes, and game-like labs.
Price: Free, but you’ll need to pay 99 USD for the verified certificate.
Product Management Courses from Udacity
Aim: To understand your potential user and to focus your product on your users’ needs, wants, and desires.
What you’ll learn: Strategy to identify your ideal user, communication skills, and how to grow your user base.
Time/Effort: Approximately 2 weeks.
For: Intermediate (product managers wanting to improve their skills and learn more about their users and UX).
Includes: Industry professionals, a student support community, self-paced learning, and excellent content and interactive quizzes.
Aim: To enhance your skill-set and boost your hireability.
What you’ll learn: Product validation, UI/UX practices, Google’s Design Sprint, and setting metrics.
Time/Effort: Approximately 2 months.
For: Entry-level product managers.
Includes: Content is taught by industry pros, interactive quizzes, self-paced learning, and a student support community.
Product Management Courses from Udemy
Aim: To learn the skills product managers use every day, as well as vision, strategy, and advanced metrics for product managers. `
What you’ll learn: The difference between vision and strategy, how to use a vision framework, how to align metrics with the overall business strategy, how to debug metrics, how to design a cohort analysis, the difference between a leading and lagging metric, how to use OKRs to track progress, how to recognize cohort anomalies, and how to design and run a t-test on cohort data.
Time/ Effort: There are 37 lectures in total amounting to 5.5 hours worth of material. Approximately 5 to 10 weeks.
For: A basic understanding of product management is beneficial. Designed for anyone who wants to learn advanced product management techniques and for product managers and CEOs who want to improve their decision-making skills.
Includes: Inputs from product managers working at top tech firms, 5.5 on-demand videos, 6 articles, 44 downloadable resources, case studies, a bonus section, lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 199,99 EUR
Aim: To understand the roles of a product manager in different types and sizes of companies and how the product life cycle applies to every product.
What you’ll learn: Skills that make up product management as a whole, such as market research, wireframing, metrics, project management, scoping, and leadership. Understand the difference between agile and waterfall development, learn software development concepts, and how to communicate effectively. You will also learn a sketch system called POP, how to build user personas, gain an understanding of the process of customer development, and assessing the core problem of a product.
Time/Effort: About 10 weeks
For: Anyone wanting to get into product management or wanting to transition into product management. Also good for product managers wanting to improve their skills and entrepreneurs who want to master the product development process.
Includes: 13 hours on-demand video, 25 articles, 120 downloadable resources, full lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 194,99 EUR
Aim: To succeed as a manager with important skills, actions, and behaviors.
What you’ll learn: Effective management and goal-setting skills, delegation and feedback, communication at a managerial level (negotiation, motivation, and conflict resolution), problem solving, time management, and how to deal with poor performance and staff development.
Time/Effort: About 5 weeks, but structure is flexible.
For: New managers/ anyone wanting to succeed in management
Includes: 2.5 hours on-demand video, 1 article, 2 downloadable resources, lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 49,99 EUR
Aim: How to monitor and encourage the performance of employees in the workplace.
What you’ll learn: Supporting employees in creating and implementing goals, assessing and evaluating the performance of individuals, creating a plan that aligns employee goals with the company’s overall vision, and how to give constructive feedback.
Time/Effort: Less than 5 weeks.
For: Anyone looking to manage an individual or team’s performance successfully or anyone looking to boost engagement in the workplace.
Includes: 1.5 hours on-demand video, 7 downloadable resources, full lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 144,99 EUR
Aim: To gain an overall and insightful overview of product management with practical case studies, live case hands-on exercises, and quizzes.
What you’ll learn: Understand the fundamentals of product management, conduct user research, understand the principles behind designing an awesome product. Learn how to create wireframes, Mockups, and specs and user stories. Understand technology and software development terminologies, define an MVP, develop a roadmap, understand agile methodologies, conduct design sprints and usability testing, and how to prepare for a product management interview.
Time/ Effort: Approximately 5 weeks.
For: Anyone wanting to become a product manager or anyone wanting to transition into product domain. Also for current product managers and entrepreneurs wanting to learn and improve product development for their startup.
Includes: Inputs from product managers working at top tech firms, 3.5 on-demand videos, 7 articles, case studies, lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 24,99 EUR.
Aim: To learn about design-led product management.
What you’ll learn: Communication skills, ability to work in a resource-constrained environment, critical thinking about UX, describing the value of a product with necessary language, and the ability to make complex ideas understandable.
Time/Effort: Less than 5 weeks.
For: Engineers, designers, product managers wanting to expand their knowledge to think about their job through a design lens, and business leaders.
Includes: 1,5 hours on-demand video, 11 downloadable resources, full lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 44.99 USD
Aim: To build B2B personas for the enterprise.
What you’ll learn: How and why the B2B customer persona is crucial to your product positioning, messaging, and go-to-marketing plans. Expand your marketing experience, learn how to build critique, and discover how to collaborate with your colleagues.
Time/Effort: Less than 5 weeks.
For: Product managers, product marketing managers, product engineering managers, product owners, marketing communication managers, and marcom managers.
Includes: 2 hours on-demand video, 1 article, 3 downloadable resources, full lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 19,99 EUR
Aim: To become a more strategic product manager and have a greater impact on your company and products.
What you’ll learn: Best practices, including market intelligence, strategy, new product development, and lifestyle management.
Time/Effort: Approximately 5 weeks.
For: PMs with 0-5 years of experience who work with engineers.
Includes: 4 hours on-demand video, 20 articles, 43 downloadable resources, full lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 19,99 EUR
Aim: To learn the necessary skills, tools, and processes to become an excellent and successful product manager.
What you’ll learn: Core skills, ideation, market research, wireframing, prototyping, leadership, and how to identify weaknesses in your competitors. Learn how to become an agile product owner and how to use industry-standard tools like Pivotal Tracker, Axure, and Popplet.
Time/Effort: Between 5 and 10 weeks (87 lectures)
For: People transitioning into a product management career, junior product managers, and entrepreneurs who want to learn the process on how to build a game-changing product.
Includes: Behind-the-scenes look at case studies like the NASA app and Getaround, 5.5 hours on-demand video, 16 downloadable resources, lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: 199,99 EUR
Time-Specific Product Management Courses
Aim: To manage the digital product life cycle.
What you’ll learn: How to identify market opportunities and user needs, product launch, defining your minimum viable product, positioning, and pricing; and managing agile teams.
Time/Effort: For the 2 April course: 10 weeks, 3 hours per week. For the 26 May course: 5 weeks, 7 hours per week.
For: Anyone in product management or those working closely with product.
Includes: Live online lectures, real-time feedback, opportunity to connect with peers, and access to Synapse, BrainStation’s learning platform that provides content, quizzes, and resources.
Price: 2900 USD. Scholarships are available.
Start dates: 2 April 2019 and 26 May 2019.
Aim: To gain an overview of design research and its benefits and challenges.
What you’ll learn: Identifying potential users, product/ market fit, process, tools, and models used by design researchers. Learn how to construct a design research study, identify and frame the problem or opportunity, the role of fieldwork, how to find relevant insights, and how to communicate research-based findings to a business audience.
Time/Effort: 7 weeks.
For: Introductory course for product managers wanting to conduct small design research studies or who need to manage/ interact with design research products conducted by others.
Included: Interaction with instructor, interaction with peers, direct feedback from the instructor, self-paced learning, and excellent, quality content.
Price: 460 USD
Start date: 1 April 2019
Aim: To become a product manager and how to build a product roadmap.
What you’ll learn: User research, prototyping, design validation, product deployment, and more.
Time/Effort: 5 months (about 8-10 hours per week)
For: Project managers, project leads, technical managers, software developers, and marketing and sales professionals
Includes: 2 workshops, live Q&A sessions, mock interviews with product experts, case studies and assignments, one-on-one mentorship from product experts, personalized resume-building exercise, and content access for 3 years.
Price: On request.
Start date: 27 March 2019
Aim: Varies depending on the course you take (for example, learn how to build software products or learn how to get a job in product).
What you’ll learn: Depending on the course, you will learn product management best practices and tools, scrum, user testing, prototyping, A/B testing, KPIs, public speaking, stakeholder management, and job search strategy.
Time/Effort: 2 months.
For: These are great courses for product managers wanting to improve both their hard and soft skills.
Includes: Weekly mentorship and career support from excellent product managers, lifetime access, and a certificate of completion.
Price: Between 3,999 USD and 14,999 USD.
Start dates: 1 April 2019, 6 April 2019, and 18 May 2019.
Aim: To learn about the tools and techniques you need to help bring your product ideas to life.
What you’ll learn: Product strategy, product lifecycle management, design thinking, customer value metrics, business model canvas, prioritization frameworks, roadmapping, go-to market strategy, backlog management, and product-market fit.
Time/Effort: 8 weeks (5-8 hours per week).
For: Anyone wanting to get into product management or product managers looking to enhance their skill-set.
Includes: Self-paced learning, RMIT credential, industry mentors, webinars, expert content, and interaction with peer, expert, and industry employers; and an RMIT certificate.
Price: 1,200 AUD
Start date: 8 April 2019
Aim: To learn the fundamental programming tools: Python, SQL, the Terminal, and Git.
What you’ll learn: How to manipulate large datasets, access modern databases, and perform version control.
Time/Effort: 3 months (10 hours per week).
For: Although designed for experienced analysts, this course can be super helpful to PMs who have some background knowledge in this field wanting to augment their existing skill-set with in-demand programming skills.
Includes: Personalized learning plan, weekly live sessions, and a personal mentor.
Price: 399 EUR
Start date: 19 March 2019
Product Management Courses Offered on Other Platforms
Aim: Various, but courses are designed to teach you core skills and help you prepare for Certified Product Manager, Certified Product Marketing Manager, and Agile Certified Product Manager and Product Owner credentials.
What you’ll learn: The product life cycle, various roles, key agile, scrum, and leadership concepts.
Time/Effort: Between 10 and 20 hours.
For: Both current PMs and people wanting to become PMs.
Includes: Learning modules, quizzes, interactive exercises, study materials, and certification exams.
Price: 1495 USD for each course.
Aim: To learn what product management is and isn’t.
What you’ll learn: The three core disciplines of product management, communication with users, technical understanding, trade-offs, metrics, strategy, and vision.
Time/Effort: 10 days (5 minutes reading per day)
For: Beginner’s course for those wanting to learn more about product management.
Includes: One lesson sent to your inbox each day for 10 days with a quiz at the end of every lesson.
Aim: To gain an overview of the product development process.
What you’ll learn: The role and responsibilities of a PM, how to identify risks, metrics, how to create and validate product ideas, communication, how to create user flows, wire frames, and product documentation; and prioritization skills.
Time/Effort: You guessed it – one month!
For: Anyone working closely with products, leaders wanting to figure out the team’s next move, and anyone who has just been promoted to a product manager position.
Includes: Hands-on crash courses, tools and strategies, lectures and projects with real-world applications, and product management certification.
Price: 199 USD
Aim: To get an overview and introduction to Machine Learning.
What you’ll learn: Artificial neural networks, how to install python, and handwritten digit recognition.
Time/Effort: Self-paced (you have 12-months’ access from date of purchase).
For: Product managers who are interested in this field.
Includes: Assignments, tutorials and materials from industry experts, 24/7 access to the learning portal, and a recognized accredited qualification.
Price: 39 GBP
Aim: To excel in your career as a product manager.
What you’ll learn: 4 specialized product manager training courses: Fundamentals, Ace the Interview, Inspiring Teams, and Product Strategy. Learn about popular product management tools, portfolio management and personas, leadership, mentorship and management of junior PMs, interview confidence, motivating teams, and product strategy.
Time/Effort: Indefinite – the course is completely self-paced and you can decide when you start and finish.
For: Newcomers to the field or anyone aspiring to be a product manager.
Includes: Course tutor, Keela Robinson, has years of experience, having worked for both Amazon and the University of Berkeley. Downloadable templates, exercises, sample interview questions, videos, and a study guide are also included.
Price: 471,24 USD
Aim: To gain a comprehensive overview of product management and the six stages of the product life cycle.
What you’ll learn: Types of products and industries, leadership, agile and waterfall development cycles, management of the product life cycle, and research about market, customers, and ideas.
Time/Effort: About one to two weeks.
For: PMs new to the field (beginner) or anyone working closely with the product team.
Includes: Quick crash course, chapter quizzes, and a certificate of completion.
Price: Free one-month trial period.
Aim: To start a career in product management, to advance your product management and marketing career, or simply to refresh your knowledge.
What you’ll learn: B2B best practices, markets and customer goals, vertical and horizontal market segmentation, situational competitive analysis, quantitative and qualitative portfolio analysis, how to identify short-term revenue opportunities and longer-term growth opportunities. Learn how to create a strategic portfolio roadmap as well as how to create user scenario-based positioning for your products.
Time/Effort: You can choose 3-month, 6-month, or 1-year subscriptions.
For: Anyone wanting to start a career in product management/ marketing or for product managers wanting to enhance their skills and further their career.
Includes: Hands-on exercises, advanced best-practices for B2B product portfolio management and portfolio marketing, self-paced learning, advanced skills, and refresher courses.
Price: Subscriptions start at 995 USD.
Aim: To learn the skills needed to manage an IoT product.
What you’ll learn: An in-depth look at the IoT decision framework, tools to foster a common language across your company, the 5 building blocks of the IoT technology stack, how to discover and prioritize the needs of your IoT users, how to create a robust data strategy, how to create an IoT business model, how to work with engineering, how to launch and operate a secure IoT product, and much more.
Time/Effort: 7 weeks.
For: Product managers working on an IoT product.
Includes: Self-paced learning, video lectures, templates, exercises, lifetime access to courses, exam and certificate, curated content, and an exclusive Slack community.
Price: 1195 USD.
Your Future in Product Management
Becoming a successful product manager requires constant learning, and the greatest product managers are those who consistently learn and recognize the value in both personal and professional development. And because product managers are essentially the ‘CEOs’ of product, it’s pretty much a prerequisite to learn if you want to fight off the competition and build a product that changes the industry (if not the world!). With a myriad of courses to choose from, the choice can be a little overwhelming. But our list above should point you in the right direction.
And if you’re feeling a little uninspired to take the plunge and take up some courses and learn (I mean studying definitely isn’t the easiest thing), here are some product management quotes to give you a little pick me up:
“A great product manager has the brain of an engineer, the heart of a designer, and the speech of a diplomat.”
– Deep Nishar, Vice President of Product at LinkedIn
“At the heart of every product person, there’s a desire to make someone’s life easier or simpler. If we listen to the customer and give them what they need, they’ll reciprocate with love and loyalty to your brand.”
– Francis Brown, Product Development Manager at Alaska Airlines
“At the end of the day, your job isn’t to get the requirements right — your job is to change the world.”
– Jeff Patton, Veteran Product Manager and Consultant
Shifting from a sales/marketing-lead onboarding approach to a product-lead approach requires research, data, and an investment from the business to commit to providing a superb user experience.
If you are interested in learning how you can improve your user onboarding experience to enhance your UX strategy, make sure to check out our webinar replay with SaaS Despina Exadaktylou.
One of the main drivers of product adoption, retention, and growth is linked to how effective your user onboarding experience (UX) is. The UX will be one of the deciding factors in whether your customer truly falls in love with your product or chooses to take their business elsewhere.
As much as product managers want to deliver the best product possible, users still need to understand how to use it fully! And this all comes down to the user onboarding experience. Make sure you are delivering a great user onboarding experience by downloading our UOX guide today!