Executive education courses in finance deliver among the most tangible returns: they aim to raise the profitability of organization and generate shareholder value. Many executive courses in finance are run by the world’s top business schools in global financial centers like London or New York City.
Many of the programs are for non-finance executives looking to get up to speed on the fundamentals of corporate finance – cash flow management, valuations, mergers and acquisitions. From there, participants learn how to evaluate investment opportunities and acquire assets and to create shareholder value. They also learn how corporate funding decisions are made, and how to win finance for their projects and teams.
Some are certificate programs that enable participants to tailor the learning to their professional needs by choosing from a wide array of course options that come together into a single qualification.
Often, the programs cover novel technologies such as financial technology (fintech), artificial intelligence and machine learning in finance, with participants learning how to harness the power of technology to make better business decisions and to boost efficiency and accuracy.
The best executive courses in finance tend to be short, lasting a few days to a few weeks, either in person, online or a combination of delivery methods. Here are the top 10:
INSEAD runs the Finance for Executives course that lasts for 10 days in France and nine in Singapore. The program focuses on helping senior business executives who lack a finance background to master the basics of corporate finance and create value in their company. The executive education course covers topics such as capital budgeting, cash flow management, valuation, mergers and acquisitions. INSEAD is one of the most respected business schools in the world, ranked highly by publications such as the Financial Times.View School Profile
Columbia Business School in New York runs a two-week online course called Women in Leadership: Perspective, Performance, Perception. Participants gain the knowledge, skills and tools to further their own advancement and that of other women in leadership roles. They learn how to negotiate, give and receive feedback more effectively.View School Profile
MIT Sloan School of Management in Massachusetts in the US is also one of the highest ranked business schools in the world. It runs the Fundamentals of Finance for the Technical Executive course, which is also for non-finance leaders who need to get up to speed on the foundations of finance. The program focuses on understanding how corporate funding decisions are made, so that participants can work out the economic value of their project ideas – and get them funded.View School Profile
The Certificate in Finance path offered by the UK’s London Business School enables participants to take four executive courses in finance from a wide variety of course options, including valuation, private equity, accounting and financial analysis. The executive education programs, taken over 24 months, enable participants to tailor the options to match their level of experience, interests and schedule. LBS is Europe’s highest ranked management school; and London is one of the world’s major financial capitals.View School Profile
Another option in London is Imperial College Business School. It offers a wide array of course options ranging from risk management to fintech, artificial intelligence and machine learning in finance. The latter course is run over three days and explores the role of emerging algorithmic techniques for financial decision making. The aim is to learn how to apple AI and machine learning to the organization, thereby boosting the efficiency and accuracy of business decisions.View School Profile
The Crisis Leadership and Human Behavior program is put on by London Business School. The duration of the program is three weeks, with executives studying for between six and eight hours per week, all online. Participants will learn about the main ways in which people’s behavior can show bias in a crisis, and how this can be mitigated and leveraged to improve outcomes.View School Profile
The Finance for Executives program at the Kellogg School of Management in Illinois, US, is highly rated. It’s for people who are new to financial decision making or want to deepen their expertise. They learn how to evaluate investment opportunities and develop new insights into how shareholder value is created, and the key role that executives can play in that process. The program is offered online only, over 11 days.View School Profile
Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business runs an executive education programme over three days in partnership with the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) and Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management. The course, called the ARA Management Academy, helps attendees from the agricultural retail industry to sharpen their management, leadership and decision-making skills through a broad curriculum of study.View School Profile
IMD in Lausanne, Switzerland has consistently been ranked one of the best providers of open-enrolment executive education courses for years. Its Strategic Finance course gives participants the latest financial tools to make sound strategic choices and explores business partnering, risk governance, macro finance and fintech. Participants complete a strategic review of their financial capabilities, benchmark their finance skills and participant in an M&A simulation to boost their abilities.View School Profile
Harvard Business School in Boston, US, may have pioneered the MBA degree, but it is one of the best known brands in executive education. One of its top finance programs, from a wide array of course options, is Finance for Senior Executives. This executive education program provides participants with a foundation in corporate finance, which is essential for leaders across every functional area. They explore capital markets and systems for financial management and control. The aim is to raise the profitability of the organization.View School Profile
Stanford Graduate School of Business in California, US, also runs a top option for nonfinancial executives. The Finance and Accounting program helps participants to make better financial management decisions to boost the value of their company. The program covers balance sheets, income statements, cash flow and financial management. Participants learn how to use these financial concepts to make better-informed decisions and become an asset in their organization.View School Profile
Over in New York, a global financial center, Columbia Business School its renowned for its financial expertise. It offers many courses that cover value investing, corporate financial analysis, accounting and portfolio management. One of the most popular options is the Financial Analysis and Valuation course, run over five days. Participants in this course already have a basic understanding of finance and learn how to evaluate the financial consequences of their business decisions. They also learn how to value companies and investments.View School Profile
The SP Jain School of Management, based in Dubai, offers the Fintech for Emerging Leaders program. It’s an online course that’s been designed to help build new skills in the dynamic world of fintech, and to help participants understand its practical applications in the world of business. The program covers how fintech is transforming a broad spectrum of markets from payments and insurance to wealth management and banking.View School Profile
Close by is New York University’s Stern School of Business, another top executive education provider. It puts on the Finance and Accounting for Non-Finance Executives program. Participants gain an understanding of how basic accounting information is used to communicate with financial managers and to assess a firm’s value and future prospects. It also covers pitfalls in financial decision making including psychological biases in the field of behavioral finance.View School Profile
Communication with Power and Impact for Women is an executive course offered by Erasmus University’s Rotterdam School of Management in the Netherlands. On this one-day course, delivered in person, participants learn how to use a range of communication styles to gain resources, attract support and resolve conflicts.View School Profile
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