Course Preview: Professional Certificate in Product Management at Northwestern Kellogg

27 October 2022

[Video Transcript] Professional Certificate in Product Management

Program Overview 

Ready to Learn More? Apply to Enroll in: Professional Certificate in Product Management

Welcome to the Professional Certificate in Product Management program. Product management – it's an exciting and rewarding career. It's probably the first general management job that you will ever have. It's a job that was ranked number four in The Best Jobs in America (2020) by Glassdoor. The average salary of a product manager is $118,000. 60 percent of product managers work directly with C-level executives. So, a lot of exciting characteristics that should make this an exciting career, an exciting job for you. However, life is not easy as a  product manager. It's a challenging job. Roles are not well defined. A lot of time product managers are forced to just learn on the job and figure stuff out as they go along, and they spend a lot of time firefighting and negotiating. To be a good product manager, you need a broad range of competencies from strategy to user empathy, to design, to technology, to analytics, to teams and people management. This certificate program will equip you with a full 360-degree range of competencies that you need to become a successful product manager.  Let's look at the learning journey of this certificate program. It consists of 20 modules that will play out over a six-month period. It's a very intense program. It's a very comprehensive program. 

We will start with understanding what product management is and what product managers do. We'll then talk about how you get the customer insights that you need to inform your product innovation. Once you get those customer insights, you need to then analyze and structure the opportunities. So, what is product opportunity analysis? How do you assess product opportunities? How do you size them? And how do you prioritize them?  After opportunities, comes the discovery of the solution to the customer's problem. So, we'll get into the discussion of product discovery and requirements definition. And as you're building the product, you also need to think about design thinking and the user interface and user experience design. That's what is in the next module.  Then we'll go on to thinking about business model design. How do you actually monetize your product? How do you make money? What are the different business models that are out there and how do you optimize them?  Related to the business model design is the discussion of financial analysis for product managers. Product management math, whether that is looking at product profitability or analyzing a lead pipeline, or looking at product cannibalization, we're going to focus on all these financial analysis tools. Next, we'll talk about Agile product development. What is the process of Agile? What are Agile methodologies? Then, we'll talk about product planning and road mapping. How do you build a product roadmap? How do you look at product portfolios and analyze them and prioritize your product portfolios? Then, we will dig into product prototyping. How do you build prototypes, minimum viable products, do testing and iteration, and quick and dirty prototyping? In the second half of the course, we will then transition into the outbound aspects of product management. 

We will, in the 11th module, focus on taking products to market. What is the go-to-market strategy for a product?  What are the elements of the GTM strategy? And how do you drive successful product launches? We'll then also talk about communication skills because you're communicating all the time as a product manager,  communicating with customers, communicating with internal stakeholders, and communicating with executives. We'll talk about communication skills and best practices in active listening and presentations. Then, we'll talk about how we build capabilities around us because you don't go to market alone, you actually need partners. So, how do you manage that partner ecosystem? How do you manage the evolution of your products over time? How do you manage your products as an ongoing business? And how do you continue to drive growth, which is what we will look at in module 15? What is growth hacking? It is the idea of the sort of continuously thinking about growth opportunities and driving certain metrics related to growth forward through constant testing, measuring, and improvement. Then, we'll step back and talk about some analytics tools, because product managers today need to be tech-savvy. They need to understand how machine learning and artificial intelligence can be used not only to develop products but actually to build AI-based products. We'll do two modules here: one is focused on artificial intelligence and machine learning and another is on the data analytics tools and platforms that you can use.  We're going to conclude with the softer side, the people side. How do you manage stakeholder relationships?  How do you manage product teams? How do you run effective team meetings? And finally, we will conclude with a discussion of a special topic, which is how you do product management inside a professional services firm.  One very important aspect of this program is also the Capstone. 

So, the Capstone is an assignment that you will conduct, and you will participate in throughout the program. I'll tell you a little bit more about it at the conclusion of this video. This program also includes an exciting set of certifications. Certification in user experience design with Miro, Certification in Wireframing with a tool called  Balsamiq, A/B testing, digital marketing, and a lot of the hands-on tools and certifications you will need in order to actually perform effectively as a product manager. Lastly, the Capstone assignment is a very critical aspect of this program. We will give you a range of product management scenarios or you know, case studies. You'll pick one of those scenarios that you're most interested in. This Capstone will involve the practical application of many of the frameworks and tools that are in the modules. You will be completing elements of the Capstone assignment as you progress through the modules. You're not going to do it all toward the end. So that you're actually putting to work some of the ideas, the concepts that you're learning. This Capstone will be evaluated by the faculty and the best assignments will be presented to the entire cohort. So, we're very excited about this  Capstone as a way to bring your learning to life. So those folk is a summary of why this program matters, what's in this program, what certifications are embedded within the program, and what the Capstone assignment looks like. 

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