6 Brilliant Short Courses That Will Make You A Better Entrepreneur

image00 Most Entrepreneurs have no time for active personal development. Between irate customers, draining investor pitches and everything in-between, catching four hours of sleep alone is a small miracle. Unless intentionally pursued, entrepreneurs could go years with the workaday activities of their business without growing as a person or as an entrepreneur. The outworking of this could be anything from a failed business to a failed life. As an entrepreneur, you don't have any excuse to not build up your intellectual arsenal. Old hands could survive fairly with news articles and long-reads from Medium. But for fledgling entrepreneurs, those are just not enough. MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and short offline courses provide a flexible way to grow your skills while keeping an eye on the business. Here are six courses (some online and some offline) that we recommend:

1: New Venture Finance: Startup Funding for Entrepreneurs

Platform: Coursera Instructor: Professor Michael R. Pratt, University of Maryland Duration: 4 weeks Cost: FREE Who wants more money to scale their operations? Everybody.
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But what most entrepreneurs don't know is that there is more to raising funds than a tight business plan, beautiful decks and a healthy Rolodex of investors. In this course, Michael R. Pratt of the University of Maryland covers what entrepreneurs need to do in the early stage of their companies to prepare for funding, where to looks for funding, how to close funding and everything in-between.

2: Entrepreneurship -- From Idea to Launch

Platform: Udemy Instructor: Dr. Jeff Cornwall, Belmont University Duration: 2.5 hours, self-paced. Cost: FREE Nothing is quite as fragile as an idea. This course is for the new entrepreneur with only the idea to go on. Jeff Cornwall who teaches entrepreneurship at the Belmont University dives into practical steps entrepreneurs must take to grow an idea into a successful business. One of the reasons this course is a great fit for the new entrepreneur is that the instructor, Jeff Cornwall has been there done that, with the t-shirt to prove it. Jeff took a nine-year break to start a company called Atlantic Behavioral Health System. Jeff knows what it means to be a small time entrepreneur. He breaks down complex entrepreneurship ideas and transfers his experiences using masterly storytelling.

3: Developing Innovative Ideas for New Companies: The First Step in Entrepreneurship

Platform: Coursera Instructor: Dr. James Green Duration: 24 weeks Cost: FREE This course is voted one of the best entrepreneurship courses online. In the course, James Green, the Director of Entrepreneurship Education at Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute demystifies the start-up process and teaches entrepreneurs how to build the skills to identify and act on innovative opportunities.
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In the 4-week period of the course, entrepreneurs learn how to identify and analyze entrepreneurial opportunities, enhance their entrepreneurial mindset, improve their strategic decision-making; and build innovative business models.

4: Stanford Seed Transformation Program

Platform: Stanford Business School Instructor: SBS Faculty Duration: 12 months Cost: $5,000 (N1.95 million) Since 2013, the Stanford Business School faculty has taught African entrepreneurs to infuse Silicon Valley scale innovation to their companies. Over a period of 12 months, entrepreneurs work in small peer groups called Leadership Labs to share experiences, resources, ideas and support that help individual entrepreneurs grow their companies. This course will set you back by $5,000 (around N1.95 million). But the quality of instructors and networking that the course offer makes it worth every penny.

5: Management Acceleration Programme

Platform: Lagos Business School Instructor: LBS Faculty Duration: 3 months Cost: $4,500 (N1.75 million) One of the more popular short courses offered by Lagos-based Lagos Business School, the Management Acceleration Programme is designed for "emerging leaders, identified as having the potential to influence their organization's future success." In three months, the Lagos Business School faculty teaches entrepreneurs actionable steps and provides tools that empower entrepreneurs to meet the heavy demands of their organizations. Most of the concepts that entrepreneurs will learn are core parts of the school’s MBA program which includes business analytics and decision-making, leadership and people management, finance and accounting, strategy, and project management.
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Honourable Mention:

6: The Orange Academy Integrated Brand Experience (IBX)

The IBX course is positioned for independent creatives and Marketing Executives. But for a founder who wants to build an authoritative brand without hours and hours of experimentation, this course is a good place to start. In the 6-month course, participants learn Brand Management, 360-degree marketing, social media, product launch and more. Learn more. Have you taken any of these courses? What were they like? Please share your thoughts in the comments. ___ Are you a Nigerian entrepreneur with a transformative idea? Cranium One is a premium coworking hub that provides space for people to connect, collaborate and bring their ideas to reality. Learn more.