10 totally-worth-it online courses for mid-career professionals

Go back to school—and push your career forward—from the comfort of your living room.

10 totally-worth-it online courses for mid-career professionals

Just because you’re no longer sitting in a classroom five days a week doesn’t mean your student days are behind you. Remember, there’s nothing hiring managers love more than an employee who is committed to self-improvement. And if you’re serious about putting your career on the fast track, you need to demonstrate your willingness to learn and grow.

The good news is you don’t have to take the GREs or get another degree to build your knowledge bank and become even more marketable. Online education offers you the opportunity to do just that—at a pace that works with your schedule.

Monster partner Udemy.com offers more than 40,000 skill-building online courses in a wide range of subjects. We looked through their course list to pick 10 that will help any mid-career professional charge up the corporate ladder. 

1. An entire MBA in 1 course

If you don’t have the time or money to go back to school for a full MBA, this eight-hour course led by award-winning professor Chris Haroun—Udemy’s best-seller among its business offerings—might be the next best thing. The lessons seek to cover “only practical concepts that you can use and no boring theory.”

2. Salary negotiation: how to negotiate a raise or promotion

Are your peers earning more money than you, even though they have just as much experience? Is fear or uncertainty keeping you from getting paid what you’re worth? Author/speaker/digital media professional Jim Hopkinson wants to help you overcome anxiety and teach you the skills needed to negotiate better pay. This one-hour course offers insights on developing a negotiation game plan and improving your persuasiveness.

3. How to run professional meetings

Spearheading an effective, engaging meeting is both an art and a science, something instructor Jimi Okubanjo no doubt learned while working across multiple sectors in more than 15 countries. Her course includes guidance on setting ground rules and roles for meetings, when to use a facilitator, and proper follow-up steps, including evaluating a meeting’s effectiveness. Free

4. Building a personal brand, by Gary Vaynerchuk

According to instructor Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO and founder of VaynerMedia, this course is tailored for “anyone who realizes that we're living in a time when anyone can form a business or brand around something they're passionate about.” (Hint: That should be you!) This two-hour course with 50 lectures covers topics including self-awareness and discovering your passion, a breakdown of how to best use the top social media platforms, and monetization of your traffic.

5. From invisible to invincible — career advancement success

Pondering what your next career move should be? Before you decide, note that this intriguing course doesn’t automatically associate career advancement with moving up the organizational chart. Topics include dealing with others’ perceptions and your cultural influences, both of which can affect your career, and what managers really look for when deciding whom to promote.

6. Achieve more in less time using SMART goals

Do you have a game plan in place to get you to the next level of your career? Create one using the SMART system, which stands for specific, measurable, actionable, relevant and time-bound. Educational psychologist Dr. Richard Feenstra uses this technique to teach you better time management and efficiency skills, as well as how to incorporate its broader use for achieving long-term goals. Free

7. Ultimate resume makeover course: Get your dream job

If you can’t remember the last time you updated your resume and gave it a thorough reevaluation, now’s the time. After all, it’s still the single most critical component of many job applications. Forex trader Thomas White helps you refresh your resume using critical keywords, and offers tips for creating customized resumes for different jobs.

8. Productivity: Master 9+ ways to become highly productive

As anyone who’s been in workforce for a number of years knows, your time is a precious resource. This 35-minute course from the AOVO Academy seeks to improve your time management and overall productivity, both professionally and personally. Topics include the value of setting goals and making lists, how to set priorities and effectively use deadlines, and how to cut down on distractions.

9. 7 scientifically proven steps to increase your influence

Think of this course as a modern update on How to Win Friends and Influence People. It’s taught by someone who knows a thing or two about the subject: Author Vanessa Van Edwards is the lead investigator at the Science of People, a human behavior research lab, whose work has been featured on Huffington Post and NPR. The course aims to revolutionize how you interact with others personally and professionally as a means to boost your charisma—and, in turn, your income. Free

10. Advanced management training: leadership, negotiation + more

If you’re a new manager wading into unchartered waters, Davis Jones, co-founder of professional development community Eazl, can teach you how to successfully make the leap into your leadership position. His course covers common management challenges, communication, negotiation and productivity tips to help you lead your team to success.

Interested in exploring other courses? Click here to access Udemy's course catalog.