A man wearing a suit with no tie stands in the center of a group of other businesspeople. He talks and gestures while the other four people look on and listen.
Not all skills require years of study. You can start learning vital managerial skills in a couple of hours through online courses. — Getty Images/fizkes

Managing other employees is not easy, and if you want to be effective at your job, there are many soft skills you’ll have to learn and master. These seven courses will teach you how to lead a team, communicate effectively and train other employees.

Coursera: "Conflict Resolution Skills"

"Conflict Resolution Skills" is a free course offered by Coursera through the University of California, Irvine. This class will teach you how to listen and communicate effectively with employees. It also teaches verbal and nonverbal communication skills and how to create an effective conflict resolution plan.

The self-paced course takes four hours to complete and comes with videos, practice quizzes and peer feedback. The class is free to audit, but you will need to pay for a Coursera membership if you want the certification.

[Read more: How to Resolve Conflict at Your Small Business]

Alison: "What Great Leaders Do"

"What Great Leaders Do" is available through Alison and is taught by Bob Sutton, a professor of management science at Stanford University. This course provides a high-level overview of what it means to be an effective leader. It’ll also teach you how to deal with toxic employees and protect the health of your organization.

The class takes between an hour and a half to three hours to complete, and you can start taking it at any time. Alison courses are always free to take, but you will have to pay for the certification.

Harvard University: "Exercising Leadership: Foundational Principles"

"Exercising Leadership: Foundational Principles" is a self-paced course through Harvard University, and it’s free to audit. The course lasts four weeks and requires a time commitment of two to three hours per week.

You’ll learn how to build trust with the employees you manage and navigate conflict at work. Plus, the class teaches strategies for helping employees deal with and adapt to change at work.

[Read more: How to Rethink Leadership in Today’s Changing World]

Before you can effectively lead other people, you need to be able to manage your time well.

Coursera: "Fundamentals of Management"

"Fundamentals of Management" is another course from Coursera, and it may be a good choice for anyone new to management. The course takes seven hours to complete and provides a good overview of what it means to be a successful manager.

By the end of the class, you’ll understand the difference between managers and leaders and be able to describe the five functions of management. The class also teaches valuable time management skills, how to set SMART goals and the power of building a network.

Udemy: "Time Management for Professionals and Entrepreneurs"

Before you can effectively lead other people, you need to be able to manage your time well. "Time Management for Professionals and Entrepreneurs" is a free course offered by Udemy, and it’s designed for managers and entrepreneurs. The class takes less than an hour and will teach you how to be more productive and implement a better work-life balance.

[Read more: How to Measure Employee Productivity]

Alison: "Communication Skills: Persuasion and Motivation"

"Communication Skills: Persuasion and Motivation" is also available through Alison, and it will teach you practical communication skills. The class explains the difference between persuasion and manipulation and how to motivate other employees.

This course is a good option for anyone who wants to learn better communication strategies. The self-paced course will take between an hour and a half to three hours to complete.

HubSpot Academy: "Grow Your Training Skills"

At some point, you’ll likely have to train other employees, and this class will teach you how to do it. In addition, you’ll learn how to create and deliver an effective training program and how to communicate clearly with the people you’re managing.

"Grow Your Training Skills" is a free class offered by HubSpot Academy. You can complete the entire class in less than two hours, so it’s an excellent option for busy professionals.

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Published June 16, 2021