Product Management

eCornell

How long?

  • online
  • on demand

eCornell

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Who should attend

  • Current and aspiring product management professionals
  • Product marketing managers
  • Designers
  • Engineers and developers
  • Business and data analysts
  • Entrepreneurs and small business owners
  • Operations managers
  • People interested in transitioning to the tech industry

About the course

Product management is among today’s most desirable skill sets, often serving as a direct path into executive leadership in organizations and making or breaking success for entrepreneurs. In this program, you will develop the product mindset needed to bring viable products to market. The courses are designed to give product managers a deeper understanding of what it takes to bring a product from idea, to launch, to future iteration. You will begin by defining the problem a product will solve as you map the customer’s journey and articulate user personas. You’ll have the opportunity to learn important facets of product roadmapping decisions and prototyping through a number of product management activities, including how to partner with designers to create codeless prototypes. The focus then moves to measuring progress against objectives and presenting product learnings to stakeholders. You will apply these skills to build and launch into production, ensuring end-product success as you bring your product to market.

Developing a Product Hypothesis and User Personas

Developing and launching new products involves more than a great idea. In today's fast-paced digital economy, understanding your target customers and their specific needs is essential to launching and managing successful products. In startups and established companies alike, the product manager serves as a key player in taking a product from idea to launch to success. To bring viable products to market, a successful product manager needs to balance creative inspiration with a disciplined approach, and it is with this approach that we frame this first course.

This course seeks to answer the question “Who is my customer?” You will explore how to develop a product by first defining the problem your product addresses. To do this, Keith Cowing will share his deep knowledge in product management to help you map your customer's journey and articulate user personas. Once you understand and articulate target personas, you will have a much clearer picture of the real problem your product is trying to solve, paving the way for a strong product strategy.

Product Vision and Goals

Have you ever thought about why some products succeed and some fail? A product manager is responsible for the product's success. This all begins with setting a vision for the future where your stakeholders visualize how your product will improve your customers' lives. From there, you can begin to break down the specific goals you need to accomplish to make this future a reality. That helps you set the vision and articulate what a winning product looks like.

Visualizing and drawing the business is an important step in the process. In this course, you will learn how to break your business down into pieces so that you can carefully develop a winning strategy and focus on what matters. Keith Cowing will help you visualize and draw the business, then identify the objectives and key results you will rally the team to achieve.

Product Roadmapping

You have defined clear goals and started to define a vision for your product. The product manager now moves to answer a key question, “What do we build?” A product manager needs to define a framework for prioritization, source ideas from relevant customers, team members, and stakeholders, and make sound decisions. Then a product manager can pull it together into a roadmap that defines what the team will build and when.

In this course, you will learn the art of developing a compelling roadmap, which will keep the team focused and align your stakeholders around the support you need. Keith Cowing will guide you through the nuances of product management, help you define a framework for feature prioritization, and walk you through key factors you need to consider. He will also demonstrate how to skillfully navigate the organization and present the roadmap to your team.

Product Prototyping

Now that you have built a compelling roadmap and told the story to generate support, it's time to design your product. This course addresses the question, “What should the product look like?”

In this course, you will learn how to prototype, either by yourself or in partnership with a product designer. What is meant by “codeless?” It means you will simulate the product experience just well enough to get valuable feedback from potential customers. You will also learn strategies for partnering effectively with design teams. This will enable you to develop informed opinions about what the product should look like and write a Product Requirements Document (PRD), unlocking the engineering team. This is an exciting moment when you prepare to pivot from analysis and planning to designing and building.

Product Analytics and Iteration

Once a codeless prototype is built, the product manager needs the ability to assess the product and identify changes to the product roadmap that will fuel success. This is a key area in the product management process, as you want to know how people actually use the product. It's about learning what is working and what is not working, articulating the underlying reasons, and knowing if and when to change direction.

In this course, you will learn how to measure progress, validate or update product hypotheses, and present product learnings. Keith Cowing will share that through data and testing. You will gain the tools to make informed decisions. As you consider the culture of your company, a common thread throughout your career, you will present your product learnings and a case to approve or potentially change the course of your product roadmap.

Product Engineering and Execution

You made it this far learning what worked and what didn't work, and presented product learnings to your team. The case was made to approve or potentially change the course of your product roadmap. The product manager now moves from analyzing to actually building, to bring the product to launch.

In this course, you will learn to guide the engineering team on a day-to-day basis. To work on the right things to produce results and ensure a successful product. You will move fast to plan a sprint, write a user story/ticket, and work with engineering teams and debug. This is the product manager's mission. Are you ready?

KEY COURSE TAKEAWAYS

  • Define a single problem the product solves for customers
  • Perform user research, map the customer journey, and create target personas
  • Define the product vision, key drivers of success, and the most critical goals
  • Validate hypotheses about your users, product, and business
  • Create a compelling product roadmap that articulates what you plan to build
  • Design a product prototype
  • Develop your Minimum Viable Product
  • Plan a product sprint and outline work for an engineering team
  • Analyze product data to measure success and inform the next iteration of the product

Experts

Keith Cowing

Keith Cowing is a Visiting Lecturer at Cornell Tech and vice president of product management at Flatiron Health, a technology company focused on accelerating cancer research. He has spent 15 years building products, teams, and companies, and now teaches about careers and product management. Keith...

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Product Management at eCornell

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