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10 Quality Online Courses To Make You Successful Entrepreneurs

10 Quality Online Courses To Make You Successful Entrepreneurs

As technology continues to evolve at a fast pace, it becomes clear that it affects the way things get done.  As an Entrepreneur, it is important to stay ahead of the curve, taking the opportunity to prepare yourself in order to provide quality results.  This usually means making the time to continue your education.  Enrolling in online classes is a great way to improve your skills and to gain new skills, because you can set your own hours in order to fit a learning opportunity in with your busy schedule.  The opportunities are invaluable for Entrepreneurs whether you are starting out or have years of experience under your belt.

You now have the opportunity to learn and to grow your business from the privacy of your home, with affordable courses.  Not every course is long and strenuous; from coaching programs, to mini courses and engaging video courses, there is something for every Entrepreneur.

Below is a list of 10 Quality Online Courses to Make Help You to Succeed as an Entrepreneur.

10 Quality Online Courses to Make You Successful Entrepreneurs

    1. Redefining Branding: A Beginner’s Guide to Understanding & Mastering Branding by Analyzing The Best

    This unique course, specifically structured for Female Entrepreneurs, approaches branding by analyzing the best in order to help you gain insight into your own challenges, and mistakes.

    The 6 week program will be an opportunity for you to truly understand what it takes to build a successful, powerhouse brand, by exploring the most powerful brand.  You will have the opportunity to dissect your own brand strategy as you compare it to one that works in order to understand why you may be failing.

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    A fun opportunity to connect with other Entrepreneurs through our secret Facebook Group, in staying true to the Chic Mompreneur Vision our hope is that this will not only be a learning opportunity, but an opportunity to create invaluable connections with like minded women.

    This 6 week course begins September 1st, Enroll today, to secure a place today!

    2. Savvy Branding: How to Build an Irresistible Brand

    This awesome mini course is taught by Amazon Best Selling Author and the founder of Red Slice, Maria Ross. It answers the questions so many Entrepreneurs have about branding. The course, if provided through Learn Savvy, is a one stop shop for women to gain the business, technical and life skills they need. This premier educational marketplace allows women to not only teach, but to learn together. The Savvy Branding course will allow you to create an irresistible brand for your business.  Helping you to understand why branding is more than just a logo and how to create the essence, value and promise that needs to be communicated to your audience.  A step by step process for building a rock-solid online and offline brand strategy. Take a class, Give a Class, Means that for every course you purchase, Learn Savvy will donate a class to a woman who would not be able to afford to take a class. Get started on Learn Savvy.

    3.  Characteristics of The Successful Entrepreneur

    Jeff Hawkins is the co-founder of Palm and Handspring, he is also the architect of the Palm Pilot and the Treo smartphone and many other computing products.  This course is an opportunity to follow the journey of an established entrepreneur and see the valuable lessons learned, challenges with work/life balance, and more.  Hawkins discusses how to design successful products, market research and the importance of testing products continuously.  There is a lot to be learned from the experience of Jeff Hawkins, and he tackles it all. This is a great option for business students interested in technology.

    For more information about Characteristics of The Successful Entrepreneur, with Jeff Hawkins, visit the site here.

    4. Entrepreneurship–From Idea to Launch

    Over 44,000 students have completed this Udemy course, by Dr. Jeff Cornwall.  New to business or considering Entrepreneurship as an option? Join the 44,097 students who have taken this course in order to gain a practical understanding of what it takes to turn an idea into a successful business. This course offers Exercises to help you apply what you learn to your own idea, and offers lectures that include: The Life Cycle of a Business, Market?, What is a Business Model?, and more.

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    You can find more information about this Udemy course, here.

    5. How to Build a StartUp

    Join 287,000 students, and prepare yourself to start an awesome course!

    What do you get from this course?

    • Actively listening and engaging your customers to find out what exactly they want in your product and how you should deliver it to them
    • Gathering, evaluating and using customer feedback to make your product, marketing and business model stronger
    • Engaging your customers through the three phases of the customer relationship management lifecycle: get, keep, and grow
    • Identifying key resources, partners, activities, and distribution channels required to deliver your product to your customer
    • Calculating your direct and indirect costs for delivering your product

    If that is not enough to interest you, Steve Blank as an instructor may give you the jolt you need to explore this free course!

    Steve Blank

      6. CodeAcademy

      I am currently a student of Code Academy, and it is a great course for anyone interested in learning how to create a website from scratch. Whether you would like to offer your clients more services, are interested in exploring a career as a freelancer, or would just like to explore a new hobby.

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      Even the mayor of New York has had nothing but great things to say about Code Academy!

      For more information about this de Blasio endorsed course, Click Here

      7. Think Digital

      Understanding Social Media as an Entrepreneur can only be a benefit.  Think Digital teaches you how to leverage the power of social media, to gain more traffic, more customers, more clicks, more shares, more purchases and more involvement in a shorter period of time.

      Register NOW

      8. Hubspot Academy

      This free program from HubSpot is great for CEO’s, Entrepreneurs and students and prepares you to start a business online. Take advantage of digital marketing today and gain a better understanding of website optimization, landing pages and lead nurturing.

      Not only do you get a certificate, but a badge that you can share on your website, LinkedIn page or Email Signature.

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      Get Started

      9. Startup Engineering

      Startup Engineering is a 12-week course for the Techpreneur.  By the end of this course you will have the skills to build a tech startup from the ground up.  Taught by Stanford’s Balaji Srinivasan and Vijay Pande, you will build a command line application, expose it as a web service, and create an HTML5 mobile app.

      For more information, visit Coursera

      10. Design Thinking for Business Innovation

      Approach the world like a creative, preparing yourself to approach business with the same process, and tools that the best creative minds use to build innovative brands.

      Though designing as a craft requires years of dedicated education and talent to master, Design Thinking as a problem solving approach does not.

      Get Started

      Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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      Last Updated on November 5, 2019

      5 Learning Management Systems (LMS) for Effective Learning

      5 Learning Management Systems (LMS) for Effective Learning

      Businesses rely on talent to generate and sell value. Without skilled people to create its products, manage its operations and execute its strategies, a business would inevitably fizzle out of the game and leave better-staffed competitors to take the field.

      This is the reason why ambitious companies go great lengths to attract top talent,[1] shelling out millions of dollars in the process and bending traditional work policies just to bring highly skilled but demanding candidates into the fold.

      Clearly, the contours of business are changing. But so are the demographics of work.

      Millennials have become the dominant generation in the job market in terms of population, and some have already transitioned into leadership roles. Most millennials consider opportunity to learn and grow more important than overall compensation.[2]

      Companies also today expect employees to come equipped with razor sharp business acumen.[3] Unfortunately, there is an alarming discrepancy between the actual skills businesses need and those currently possessed by job candidates.

      To stay in the game, employers need to continually upgrade their training and skills development strategies to cover the entire employee lifecycle.

      What are Learning Management Systems (LMS)?

      Learning management systems are software-based solutions for authoring, presenting, consuming, storing, and tracking educational content and training materials. These systems aim to centralize all instructional content (e.g., lessons, training modules, instructional videos, presentation slides, worksheets, online quizzes, ebooks, takeaway notes, etc.) in one place.

      LMS enable instructors to design and deliver learning experiences to students, with the added capability of evaluating the effectiveness of the instructional materials and grading the learning progress of students.

      On the other side of the equation, learners use LMS to develop skills and acquire new knowledge virtually anytime and anywhere via the different channels and content formats made possible by digital technology.

      Over the years, a wide range of features and technologies have been integrated into learning management systems to help enhance the experience of training designers, instructors, and learners. These include cloud and mobile technology, artificial intelligence, responsive design, scheduling, gamification, data analytics, and interoperability with other applications.

      5 Best All-Purpose Learning Management Systems

      There are dozens of LMS vendors catering to the general market or to specific segments such as K-12 learning, higher education, and corporate training.

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      With so many options available, selecting the right LMS solution for your needs can be complicated and costly, especially when you end up adopting a platform that doesn’t exactly match your goals or requirements.

      Short of conducting a comprehensive audit of your needs and finalizing a learning roadmap, the safest bet would be to adopt full-featured but affordable LMS solutions.

      Based on user reviews, here are the 5 best LMS to help people gain knowledge, build skills, and achieve mastery:

      1. Canvas Network

      Launched by Instructure as an open source software in 2011, Canvas is an end-to-end cloud-based service originally engineered for the education sector.

      Widely adopted for K-12 and Higher Ed learning, Canvas can be repurposed for anything that involves an instructor, a subject matter, and a student.

      Used around the world by people of all ages and organizations of all types, Canvas arguably has the largest learning and support community in its class. It works on desktop computers, tablets and mobile phones.

      To get a glimpse of the platform’s fresh interfaces, you can visit the Canvas Network, a learning community that provides educational and instructional materials created by colleges, universities, corporate businesses, independent course developers, and other knowledge-sharing entities around the world.

      Hosting hundreds of interesting topics from data science to horticulture, the learning network also serves as evidence to the scope, capabilities, and popularity of the Canvas LMS platform.

      Canvas is hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure, which enhances the platform’s reliability, speed, scalability, and overall online performance.

      Additionally, platform adopters enjoy a low-risk environment since cloud-based solutions require no hard stops for version updates, upgrades, or system migrations.

      The Canvas website does not show a price matrix but says the service adopts a simple formula for computing fees: a one-time implementation fee and an annual subscription fee based on total number of users. It also promises free basic services for teachers who want to use the platform.

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      In addition to Canvas, Instructure also offers Bridge (an LMS designed for corporate environments), Arc (a video platform for online learning), and Gauge (an assessment management system).

      Check out this video if you want to learn more about Canvas Network:

      2. Google Classroom

      This free service from Google aims to improve the teaching and learning process using cloud technology, web apps, workflow simplification, and seamless communication between students and instructors.

      Using Classroom, educators can easily create and schedule classes, distribute assignments, send feedback, and grade quizzes all in one place. By streamlining processes, Classroom helps teachers save time and organize classes more effectively. Both students and teachers can also work using any device anytime and anywhere.

      Classroom works perfectly with other Google tools, having been launched initially as part of Google’s G Suite for Education. This LMS solution taps Google Drive for content storage and distribution, as well as Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for the creation and sharing of instructional materials. Meanwhile it integrates Google Calendar for scheduling and Gmail for communication.

      With G Suite, other communication channels such as chat messaging, video conferencing, and a dedicated website are enabled.

      Easy to set up and manage, Google Classroom is free to use. One of my very first courses was actually hosted on Google Classroom.

      Going beyond the classroom environment, Google offers G Suite Enterprise for Education for large institutions. This suite provides enhanced search and analytics capabilities as well as advanced tools for enterprise communications.

      3. Moodle (Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment)

      If budget and capability equally top your list of LMS adoption criteria, then Moodle might just fit the bill. Which is to say there’s none (i.e., bill).

      Moodle is a free and open-source learning solution for distance education, workplace training, flipped classrooms, and other pedagogical environments.

      It is also a full-featured LMS supported by a robust community and a thriving developer ecosystem. Not surprisingly, Moodle is used in more than 15 million courses by more than 130 million users in 230+ countries.

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      Among other things, Moodle enables administrators and educators to create a dynamic and dedicated website to host organic, easily accessible, and highly customizable courses that can be experienced on desktops and mobile devices anytime and anywhere.

      Moodle provides a personalized and intuitive dashboard as well as a host of collaboration tools for content designers, teachers, and learners. A universal calendar, an efficient file management system, an automatic notification system, multimedia integration, and a progress tracking tool all come with the package.

      Check out this video if you want to learn more about Moodle:

      4. Absorb

      This platform recently bagged PC Magazine’s Editors’ Choice Award for Best LMS.

      Co-designed and built by former course authors, Absorb takes learning experience to the next level. This turnkey LMS solution is responsive, full-featured, and highly customizable for maximum impact.

      Course developers can orchestrate a wide range of experiences depending on audience or learning situation. In addition to surveys, polls, and e-commerce integration, Absorb supports formal online learning and certifications standards such as AICC, SCORM, and Tin Can.

      The user interface can also be modified to match the learner’s location, group, or department, allowing for a different look and feel for customers, channel partners, management trainees, and newly hired employees.

      Absorb supports all personal computing devices from desktops to mobile phones. There are also native or hybrid apps for iOS and Android.

      The only possible drawback to the platform’s powerful feature set is its pricing. The service reportedly implements a flat, one-time setup fee depending on your business and training requirements. According to the site, any plan comes with a dedicated success team for your account.

      Although small companies are welcome to try, midsize to enterprise-scale organizations are probably the best segment to readily adopt this LMS solution.

      Take a look at some examples of Absorb in this video:

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      5. Watershed Collaborative

      Created by a group of educators, this nonprofit rethinks the priorities of an LMS, asserting that too many systems miss the most essential elements of what makes learning stick. They promise a better user experience – emphasizing Learning before Management and System.

      Watershed aims to support an inquiry-based learning experience through an integrated mix of online and in-person learning strategies and interactions designed expressly for teams – including collaboration, reflection, and dialogue.

      While Watershed was founded initially to serve the K-12 education market, the company has since expanded its scope to cater to all types of teachers and learners with its video-rich, state-of-the-art platform.

      If you’re a mission-driven educator, content creator, institution, or business, this LMS may be the one for you.

      Watershed specializes in assisting you with the instructional design of courses and provides content production services to ensure top-quality video assets with lasting value. Their LMS makes it easy for course creators to continuously update and tailor content to support small and large groups, while ensuring the technology and instructional strategy supports communities of learners.

      Pricing varies based on products and services, but revenues support the nonprofit’s ability to make its platform and courses available at little or no cost for high-need educators and educational settings.

      Honorable Mentions

      There are dozens of LMS vendors in this growing market and the brands included in foregoing list are by no means the only viable options for companies or learning institutions looking to upgrade their learning infrastructure.

      Many other excellent services are worth checking out. These include:

      1. Docebo is an LMS designed for hyper-engaging students, employees, customers, and other learners. The system helps organizations identify and resolve competency gaps with strategic learning interventions.
      2. Cornerstone OnDemand is a talent, training, and performance management solution offered as an SaaS (Software-as-a-Service). This service enables learners to create personalized playlists of instructional content.
      3. Lessonly is an LMS solution that makes it easier to recall and reinforce whatever skills or knowledge you have learned through quizzes, coaching, and constant practice.
      4. Skillsoft is an online training and corporate learning platform developed by a two-decade old and billion-dollar company with the same name.
      5. D2L BrightSpace is a learning management system that has all the basics for delivering excellent, rich-media experiences for classroom or workplace training.

      Conclusion

      There are many ways to learn but some are more effective and meaningful than others. Whether you are a teacher looking to enhance classroom learning or an HR manager creating a long-term talent development plan for employees, the key to impactful learning is to understand and bridge the needs of learners, the goals of your institution, and the actual capabilities of the learning tools you are considering.

      Note that using multiple LMS platforms is possible although not recommended. On the other hand, adopting other learning solutions beyond LMS (such as podcasts, mentoring, and onsite in-person workshops) may significantly improve learning outcomes. Always go for products and plugins that seamlessly integrate into your core LMS tool.

      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

      Reference

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