Berkeley Product Management Review: Is it Worth it?

Updated on December 14th, 2021
Berkeley Product Management Review: Is it Worth it?

Want to know if Berkeley Product Management is worth it?

In a world of endless possibilities, it can be hard to find the right path to become a great product manager. For aspiring entrepreneurs and marketing trainees looking for an edge in their trade, product management is just what they need.

So many platforms offer specialized programs with bootcamps. One of which is UC Berkeley’s program that will certify you as competent at this essential skill.

So, is this certification really worth it?

In today’s article we’ll investigate if this course offered by UC Berkeley (Berkeley Haas School of Business) really has merit or not — let’s break down why.

Berkeley Product Management Programs

Berkeley offers two online courses in product management: The Product Management Certificate Program and Product Management Studio. Classes are taught by engaging lecturers, followed by hands-on exercises and active discussions to shape successful professionals.

You can see all the detailed information on Berkeley.edu, which is their official website for Berkeley executive education.

1. Product Management Certificate Program [University of California, Berkeley]

Dealing with customers and cross-team collaboration skills can be a challenge for some people. This is when the Berkeley Product Management Certificate Program comes in handy.

As an online program, it offers courses that are customized to your needs as well as interactive exercises that will give you deeper insights into the product management world.

The six-week course starts off by focusing on improving customer service techniques while also teaching team coordination methods and design thinking so you’ll have everything necessary to succeed at meeting product management responsibilities, no matter if in a startup or in an established company.

You’ll learn how valuable communication is both within teams and outside of them too. To that end, you’ll get various assignments like live moderated discussions where classmates share their experiences or recorded lectures from industry expert product strategists.

Berkeley Product Management Certificate Program Pricing

Berkeley’s product management certificate program is a great investment that will set you up for success in the future. The program costs $7,950, which might look expensive at first sight.

However, they offer flexible payment plans to help make it easier on your wallet and have even been known to work with employers when trying to secure assistance funding.

What are The Benefits of the Berkeley Product Management Program?

There are many different benefits to get from the Berkeley Product Management Program. Apart from helping you meet minimum PM education requirements, it also gives you invaluable PM skills such as: 

1. Improve Business Communication Skills

You will learn how to be an important team player from the ground up. You’ll master cross communication with other departments essential for product management, such as production managers and sales specialists.

2. Boost Your Product Profitability

You will learn new marketing strategies and skills and set product goals to cut production costs and increase product profitability. This will help you manage your product line more effectively.

3. Improve your Management Skills

The Berkeley Product Management Certificate program will teach you the skills needed to lead in high-pressure, unfavorable situations. This includes essential leadership skills like how best to delegate tasks and make decisions under pressure while still maintaining sanity.

4. Enhance Your Essential Decision-Making Skills

You’ll be learning how to make fast, effective decisions about your product line and how to implement them effectively.

Cons:

This seven-week course can cost up tof $7,950. For some people this might not be the best value for money considering that much of the learning is going to take place online and they’re only granted a limited immersive experience at one point during the week.

2. Management Studio Program [University of California, Berkeley]

The Berkeley Product Management Studio is a seven-week program that intends to teach you the fundamentals of marketing in a matter of weeks. You’ll learn how to make your products stand out against their competitors by creating and executing on engaging stories with tried-and tested tactics, such as social media campaigns or direct mailings.

In addition, they offer specialized courses for those who are looking for more hands on experience. These interactive simulations will allow you to apply what you’ve learned directly into real life situations while interacting with peers from all over the world.

In the Berkeley product management course, you will learn from world-renowned professors and expert product managers. The instructors keep weekly live sessions to answer any queries you might have about a concept or your concerns (or other questions). Throughout the program, they’ll give small team exercises that help with comprehension of taught concepts.

Program Weekly Agenda

The Berkeley product management studio program is divided into eight weeks of immense learning, broken down as follows:

Week 0 — This will start with an introduction to the course, followed by pre-work and team coaching sessions.

Week 1 — During this week, you’ll see classes regarding Product Management Canvas and Innovation Capabilities. The week ends in a live online video session.

Week 2 — Starts off with Introduction to Storytelling for Product Managers before finishing up in an interactive online video session.

Week 3 — During week 3, you’ll get to experience hands-on learning and lectures on PM data-based decision making, customer focused design, and team coaching.

Week 4 –.Week 4 features classes in segmentation & targeting as well as a lively exercise revolving around new products.

Week 5 — ·In Week 5, you will learn about the innovation ecosystem and channel strategy. Also, you’ll have team coaching sessions.

Week 6 — In week 6, your focus is on price tools and strategies to help you achieve success in business.

Week 7 — Throughout this week, you’ll be learning about product life cycles and stakeholder management. You can expect classes that will teach these skills along with team coaching sessions to help practice them in a collaborative setting. In addition, there’s also going to be an exercise where we learn how best to engage your teams.

Week 8 — This is the final week. You will be taught how to create a product portfolio and you’re going to tell your product stories and have one-on-one coaching sessions with experts.

The exact roadmap and curriculum is subject to change. Reach out to the program coordinator or visit Berkeley’s website for any updates.

Cost:

Berkeley product management studio program is not cheap. It costs $3,750. Of course, you’ll also have the option of reaching out to your employer for assistance if necessary.

Benefits of the Berkeley Management Studio Program

There are many reasons why this program is a good investment. For one, it provides you with the skills needed to excel in your field and get ahead of all other competitors. Let’s take a look at the other benefits:

1. Improve Your Customer Experience Skills

You can enhance your product development by focusing on the customer.

2. Acquire Innovation Skills For Your Product

You’ll learn how to use customer research and market signals in product design. This will help your company’s products become more successful with customers on the marketplace.

3. Improve Your Product Storytelling Skills

Product storytelling is the most effective way to sell your products by using stories that will captivate potential customers. You’ll learn to master product storytelling to better engage and excite potential customers.

4. Enhance Your Management Skills

The program will help you learn how to make the tough decisions and delegate tasks. There are tons of decision-making strategies that can be applied in your role as a product manager and if delegation is something you struggle with, this workshop has some great task management techniques for you.

Cons:

The only drawback is that the course content and lessons are delivered exclusively online.

Even though many courses have been adapted for an online environment, there may be a trade-off in quality between taking classes with peers with whom one has had an opportunity to interact beforehand versus those who participate on their own accord or by happenstance from other parts of the world.

Alternative Product Management Training Programs

Apart from Berkeley, there are many other PM bootcamps and product management training programs. A few examples include the General Assembly Product Management course and Silicon Valley Product Camp — which also offers a more accelerated option for those who have less free time on their hands but still want to pursue this skill.

Let’s take a look at other alternatives that may be worth your time and investment.

1. One Week PM (Product Manager HQ (PMHQ)

The One Week PM course by PMHQ is the ultimate starter course to bolster your product management career. The one week intensive focuses on developing a deep understanding of how you can ace an interview, as well as what it takes in order to be successful with initiating and completing projects from start-to-finish. This will help newbie Product Managers learn all about their role so they can thrive at any company or organization.

2. One Week Technical PM (Product Manager HQ (PMHQ)

The One Week Technical PM course by PMHQ is an all-encompassing technical product management resource that offers a comprehensive introduction to the fundamentals of TPM best practices. The 15 video modules present day-by-day lectures and interviews with renowned professionals in this field, along with downloadable templates for managing your projects from start to finish.

3. Product Management Course (Product School)

The Product School is an institution that offers training in product management to registered users. Carlos González de Villaumbrosia founded the school after 10 years of experience as president at several tech companies including HP OfficeJet Software Development Company.

The instructors have ample education and are qualified to impart knowledge on enrollees through their various courses such as “Product Management 101.”

4. Digital Product Management (Boston University (edX))

Boston University offers product management training for either existing or prospective professionals. This training forms part of their MicroMasters program, which allows students to complete a graduate degree in as little as one year with six courses instead of the usual 12–18 credits at full time.

The five compulsory courses offer insight into life cycle management and innovative techniques that propel growth among other topics and are administered over 6–8 weeks with an hourly weight per course ranging from 4–6 hours each week depending on your preference between lengthier classes or completing them individually throughout the day’s sessions.

5. Product Management (Cornell University)

Cornell University is one of the most prestigious universities in America, belonging to a group of elite schools so exclusive you need an invitation just to visit. As part of their academic training, they offer certificates that teach professionals how product management works as well as understanding what it means for products and design.

Are You Ready to Start a Product Management Program?

Whether you choose Berkeley Product Management Programs or any other product management program, it’s important to understand the time and effort commitment that comes with it.

Although the Berkeley Product Management program will take up a decent chunk of your time and require you to be fully committed, it’s an investment in yourself that can help open doors for the rest of your career.

Product management is not as easy as people may think, but if graduates are willing to put in the hard work then they will reap many rewards in the long term.