Product Manager is one of the hottest positions in the emerging digital economy.
The Product Manager is essentially the “CEO” of a digital product. They understand and articulate needs; set up roadmaps, plan and coordinate the development process; champion and launch products and oversee the product life cycle. They are the implementers of ideas in digital business innovation.
In this Product Management MicroMasters program, you will gain hands on experience in:
Creating product roadmaps
Taking products from initial concept through user research, co-creation, and rapid prototyping
Agile and lean management practices for creating software and digital products
Social media and market testing methods
Applying perspective from best practices in platform based strategies.
The MicroMasters program concludes with two courses that leverage object oriented thinking, digital process capabilities, and data analytics tools to build “boundary-spanning” skills in running, measuring and adapting strategic experiments that may lead to novel products, business models and market growth.
Courses under this program: Course 1: Product Management with Lean, Agile and System Design Thinking
Learn how to use lean, agile and systems design thinking in all aspects of the digital products lifecycle.
Course 2: Platform Strategy for Business
Learn how you can design, launch, monetize and compete in a networked platform market.
Course 3: Strategic Social Media Marketing
Learn how to drive social media engagement by linking strategy and tactics and measuring results.
Course 4: Driving Digital Innovation through Experimentation
Learn how to apply principles of experimentation at the technical, organizational and strategic levels of your business to drive digital innovation.
Course 5: Business Analytics for Data-Driven Decision Making
Learn how to lead your firm to make better business decisions using analytic methods and create competitive advantages from data.
Experimentation is a key capability for any business to develop and master. Learn how to leverage data to build knowledge and apply this knowledge to improve business outcomes and create strategic advantages.
This course is part of both the Digital Product Management and Digital Leadership MicroMasters programs. In it, you will learn to develop iterative business experiments using agile methods. This capability is central to digital businesses as it allows them to sustain competitive advantage through both incremental improvements as well as significant, disruptive innovations when opportunities and conditions warrant them.
This course focuses on experimentation across the three layers of a digital business:
(1) the capacity of the technical infrastructure to provide an iterative and operational process that uses experiments to gather data and develop knowledge
(2) the ability to use agile methods and manage the knowledge interfaces among experts at the organizational layer to derive insight from data to create knowledge and ultimately drive improvements in products and processes.
(3) the capability to use the technical and organizational infrastructures to drive experimentation at scale in order to deliver digital transformation.
Social media technologies are continuously transforming the ways consumers interact with each other and firms. These changes constitute a fundamental shift in the marketplace--consumers have greater opportunities to voice their opinions and connect with their peers as well as increased influence over marketers and brands.
In this course, part of the Digital Product Management MicroMasters program, we examine how organizations capitalize on social media and consumer-to-consumer interactions to support their marketing efforts. We view these issues from a strategic and a practical perspective, rather than a technical or platform perspective. We will give you the knowledge you need to create engaging content for platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat and how to identify influencers, deliver content to a targeted audience, and measure the success of your efforts.
Understanding social media is crucial for product managers who will be operating in a digital environment. Product managers will learn how to use social media conversations to inform their decision-making and how to leverage social media to promote their products, services and the brand. Additionally, learners will gain an understanding of how social media can be used to achieve specific organizational objectives and to measure the effectiveness of those efforts.
Virtually all managerial and leadership positions in the digital economy increasingly rely on data-driven decision making. Recent studies have shown companies who adopt "Data-Driven Decision Management" achieve significant productivity gains over other firms.
Having a solid grasp of the end-to-end process of making effective decisions with data will give you an edge, both in performing such analyses yourself, as well as in effectively managing teams of business analysts and data scientists.
In this course, part of both the Digital Leadership and Digital Product Management MicroMasters programs, you will learn the tools and techniques to become a data-driven or "evidence-based" manager.
You will learn the process of reframing a business question as a data question, reasoning about what data might be of assistance and how to obtain it, integrating and cleaning the data, performing the analysis, deriving and communicating insights from the analysis, and building the managerial culture to operate in this way and create competitive advantages from enterprise data.
This course is unique in the sense that it aims squarely at the needs of a manager in an analytically focused enterprise by providing both a hands-on introduction to the concepts, methods and processes of business analytics as well as an introduction to the use of analytics as the basis for creating a competitive advantage.
Completion of this course requires the use of Microsoft Power BI Desktop. Unfortunately, there is currently no version of Power BI Desktop for macOS or Linux operating systems. We encourage learners to secure access to a Windows environment, but if that is not possible, macOS and Linux users can run Power BI Desktop in a virtual Windows environment. The course provides steps for installing such an environment.
Strong product management drives successful business model implementation. Learn about the key decisions, underlying tradeoffs, and implementation decisions needed for each phase of the product life and master business and organizational logic to ensure product success in the marketplace.
In this course, part of the Digital Product Management MicroMasters program, you will be introduced to key frameworks for decision-making based on both economic and organizational considerations. These frameworks inform a rising product manager on how to:
use customer co-creation and understanding of their needs to become a "champion" for user-centric development in digital technology.
set up and manage specific work flows (e.g. either lean, agile or stage gate development tasks) that result in timely launch and upgrades of products.
use a data-and metrics-driven approach to make product life cycle decisions including pricing, versioning, maintenance, helpdesks and end of life.
shape the direction of the product based on experimentation and system design thinking by learning from product roadmaps, competitive considerations, and allied evolution of demand in digital markets.
Caveat: This is not a course on software development, architecture or product marketing. The role of a product manager is to work with these functions effectively, such that the interests of a product (e.g., its profitability) and its customers are best served. Thus, the perspectives and skills covered in this course are integrative and allied with decision-making in their orientation.
Firms such as Apple, Alibaba, Facebook, SalesForce, Uber and Yelp operate platform ecosystems that match buyers and sellers, gain value and market share from network effects, and harness their users to innovate.
This course teaches you how to convert products to platforms and how to innovate in a platform environment. You will learn how to negotiate platform startup, convert existing products to platforms, and make vital decisions on issues of openness, cannibalization, and competition.
Learners in this course will solve real-life problems using concepts from two sided networks, information asymmetry, pricing, intellectual property, and game theory.
The instructor for this course literally wrote the book on the topic: " Platform Revolution: How Networked Markets Are Transforming the Economy --and How to Make Them Work for You. "
This course is part of both the Digital Leadership and Product Management MicroMasters programs.
Varun Nagaraj, Marshall Van Alstyne, Paul R. Carlile, Ben Lubin, John W. Byers, Chris Dellarocas, Andrei Lapets, Barbara Bickart and Nitin R. Joglekar