Good management is equal parts knowing and doing. No matter what industry you work in or where you are in your career, a basic understanding of financial, marketing and decision-making principles and other management fundamentals will help you achieve your professional goals – be it getting promoted in your current job, getting ready for a MBA program, or starting your own company.
This Specialization will give you a comprehensive introduction to the practice of management through the lens of four key disciplines: accounting, finance, marketing, and organizational behavior. In each course, you’ll analyze real business cases from these four perspectives. In the final Capstone Project, you’ll apply what you’ve learned to develop a holistic solution to a real-world business dilemma.
This Specialization will provide you with the skill set needed to help achieve the next step in your career.
Accounting: Principles of Financial Accounting
Financial Accounting is often called the language of business; it is the language that managers use to communicate the firm's financial and economic information to external parties such as shareholders and creditors. Nobody working in business can afford financial illiteracy. Whether you run your own business, work as a manager or are just starting your career, you want to understand financial information and be able to interact with accountants, controllers, and financial managers. You want to talk business! This course will provide you with the accounting language's essentials. Upon completion, you should be able to read and interpret financial statements for business diagnosis and decision-making. More importantly, you will possess the conceptual base to keep learning more sophisticated accounting and finance on your own. Do not forget that, as with any other language, becoming proficient with accounting requires constant practice.
Operational Finance: Finance for Managers
When it comes to numbers, there is always more than meets the eye. In operational finance, you will learn how to read the “story” that the balance sheet and income statement tells about the company’s operations. The insights you gain from this “financial story” will then become a tool for short-term decision-making at the top management level relating to current assets, current liabilities and the management of working capital. Finally, by the end of the course you will understand the financial consequences of managerial decisions on operations, marketing, etc.
Marketing: Customer Needs and Wants
Understanding who your customers are and what they need and want is at the heart of successful marketing strategies. In this course you will explore how to identify and classify customers and the different methods that marketing professionals use to shed light on how they make purchase decisions. The course will cover the following: 1. Marketing Fundamentals 2. Product, Pricing and Channel Decisions 3. Building Strong Brands 4. Communication Strategy
Organizational Behavior: How to Manage People
Peter Drucker, a pioneer in the field of management, once said that people have a perverse tendency to behave like human beings. Of course, we are not machines, and certainly not programmable. But through the study of organizational behavior, we can gain insights into what makes people tick within a work context. Increasing your understanding of your own behavior and that of your colleagues, teams and leaders, is an important first step to bringing positive change to how you and your organization work. The objective of this course is therefore to provide insight into four key areas: • Motivation. In this course segment we will understand the concept of motivation and review various perspectives that will help you understand how we can motivate others. • Leadership. In this part of the course, we will analyze the concept of leadership and consider various perspectives and approaches to help shed light on leadership emergence and effectiveness. • Teamwork. Here we look at team functioning and effectiveness. Using the widely used input – process – output model of team effectiveness, we consider such topics as team diversity, team processes, and team outcomes. • Culture. Finally, we'll move to the level of the organization and consider the concept of organizational culture, also touching upon the concept of national culture. We look at the various ways in which culture is expressed, and discuss the implications of culture for people within organizations and cross-cultural collaborations.
Analysis of Business Problems
When does an opportunity to increase the bottom line become a liability for long-term brand sustainability and profitability? That is the question that GAS GAS, an off-road motorcycle manufacturer, is confronting. In this culminating course, it’s time to use the business tools you have learned throughout the specialization to solve this real business problem. To help you as you develop a solution to the GAS GAS dilemma, in the Capstone you will also learn a six-step analysis of business problems methodology. By the end of the course, you will understand how to weave together considerations from accounting, finance, marketing and organizational behavior in order to arrive at a sound decision that will positively impact the firm’s future.