Being an entrepreneur in this 21st century is both exciting and fast-paced. You’ve got to be very agile and attentive to the emergence of and shift in business trends. This means you must be an avid reader; someone with an insatiable desire to continually learn new things. So it’s important as an entrepreneur to acquire the relevant skills and knowledge that’ll establish you as a force to reckon with. In this article, I’m going to discuss 5 key courses you must undergo as an entrepreneur. I consider these to be some of the most foremost areas you must master in your quest to grow as an entrepreneur.
This is first and foremost and it comes packaged in various ways. Some teaching service providers tend to blend it with other related fields e.g. Entrepreneurship and Business Management. The types of courses also differ ranging from workshop-based training to lecture-based training. So what you’ll choose to pursue will depend on your needs, location, financial position and so on. It’s also even possible to find ways in which such courses are offered for free. If you have time, money and are willing to put in the work you can even pursue a whole degree program on entrepreneurship. It’s imperative that you pursue courses in this regard because there are pertinent things about entrepreneurship that you must study, learn and master.
Most of what you do in entrepreneurship entails doing projects. For instance, you might want to do a marketing campaign or you want to conduct a consumer behaviour study. Aspects like these are best executed if you approach them as projects. Project management is an approach used to manage work within the constraints of time, cost and performance targets. So from that simple definition, you can see how important it is to study project management – it’s central to success in entrepreneurship. There are several variations to this field and you can choose what you want. For instance, I did a one-year course in Project Monitoring and Evaluation last year – you could choose to go for that. The thrust is to ultimately have a significant appreciation and know-how on how to plan and execute projects. Locally I would recommend Project Management Zimbabwe which offers very good courses in this field.
When we talk of all things marketing these days it is digital marketing that’s at the apex. The use of the internet and social media is now the most common way of conducting business marketing. Now you must understand that this is a very broad and diversified field. It can entail things like social media management, search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, and analytics amongst many others. If you’re to make it in this tech age then you must master this field by all means possible. Due to the fierce competition online you must know how to create social media marketing campaigns that’ll translate into conversions (i.e. actual sales). If you pursue a course in or under digital marketing you’ll get to learn all these dynamics and more.
Supply Chain Management
Supply chain management focuses on the creation of seamless integration in all processes involved in a product or service’s flow. Here’s the thing, a product can start off as just raw materials and the raw materials are processed, packaged into a finished product and then distributed to the end-user (or consumer). This means there’s a wide range of activities and processes to be done until the customer finally handles the finished product (same goes for services too). That means in order to operate effectively as a business you must find the best way to streamline all these variables in the most frugal way possible. Proper supply chain management leads to reductions in operating costs, creation of impeccable value for the customer and overall profitability. Surveys have even shown that businesses that properly manage their supply chain tend to be more competitive and have high levels of satisfaction amongst their consumers. So as an entrepreneur you must learn and understand how you can have top-notch supply chain management for your business.
Most businesses fail because of a lack of structured financial management. Some entrepreneurs don’t even have an elementary appreciation of how to make sense of a financial statement. Whenever a business is conducted most of the decisions that tend to be made almost always have their premise on financial issues. So as an entrepreneur it’s critically important to study and have substantial knowledge on how to effectively manage finances in a business. The courses one can undergo here are many and diverse so it might depend on what you want to pursue. However, some courses might cover a greater plane of what constitutes all issues pertaining to business financial issues. Thus it would be wiser to pursue such courses.
I would advise to always be on the lookout for programs such as seminars or workshops where such courses might be taught. You could also check with tertiary institutions – most of them actually offer weekend-long special courses for your convenience. There are even platforms where you can learn all these things for free. One of the most reputable global online platforms that offer free courses is Coursera. I highly recommend you to check it out – all the areas I’ve highlighted herein have free courses offered on Coursera. You can even ultimately get a certificate if you’re diligent enough to go through a course in its entirety. I once tried it out sometime and I guarantee you it’s worth your time.