Product management has been gaining traction in journalism in recent years and has become a sought after skill in newsrooms in many countries.
If you have an inkling that product thinking can help in your day-to-day, but don’t know where to start, the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas and instructor Paty Gomes have a new free online course for you.
“News product management: How to adopt ‘product thinking’ in your newsroom” is a massive open online course (MOOC) in Portuguese that runs from Feb. 13 to March 12, 2023. Reserve your spot today!
This course is offered for free thanks to support from the Knight Foundation.
“In our field, it is very common for a person to work with a product without having the word product in the name,” Gomes said. “They are people who deal with audience, engagement, innovation, technology, design and so many other positions in which ‘product thinking’ helps to deliver better results.”
“The coolest thing is that product thinking does not presuppose a super consolidated structure of professionals. Obviously, with engineering, design and agility resources it is easier to follow the best practices recommended in the area, but what I intend to show throughout the modules is that there are ways for you to adopt a product approach within your own context, starting small, reaping results and support,” she continued.
Gomes said the course works for journalists who either have a product that’s already being delivered, or for those who simply have an idea they’re ready to develop.
“In both cases, we will deal with what must be done to put the ball in play,” she explained.
The course contains four modules:
- Module 1 covers the challenges of using the product mindset in journalism, including the characteristics that can help or hinder a journalist become a product person
- Module 2 will show how to apply a product vision to existing products, including how to evaluate performance
- Module 3 explores adopting a product vision for new products, looking at organizational design, assembling an interdisciplinary team and mastering prioritization
- Module 4 covers multitasking and communication within your organization to ensure the success of your new approach to product
At the end of the course, students will understand which skill sets they need in order to work with product in a newsroom, and they will be able to start adopting a product approach. They’ll also learn how to communicate product strategies effectively.
Instructor Paty Gomes is director of products and technology at Brazilian news and technology startup JOTA, which covers the three branches of government using technology and journalism. Prior to that, she helped to found the education website Porvir, where she got a taste for entrepreneurship. She studied business model innovation at Northwestern University in Chicago and worked at EdSurge, Silicon Valley edtech. Gomes began her career as an education reporter at newspaper Folha de S.Paulo.
“We are very happy at the Knight Center to once again count on Paty Gomes for our training program for journalists and communicators,” says Professor Rosental Calmon Alves, founder and director of the Knight Center. “Paty is internationally recognized as a leader of the movement to spread the word among journalists about ‘product thinking’ and to teach its importance in making newspaper companies more competitive and efficient in the digital media ecosystem.”
Gomes will be joined by guest speakers, including Juan Torres, program manager at ICFJ and Luciana Cardoso, head of product at Bandplay and vice president of the board at News Product Alliance.
“I had the joy of being able to invite professionals who have in common the fact that they are people I admire a lot, who have extensive experience in journalism and who adopt product thinking, each in their own way,” Gomes said. “Their testimonies are linked to the concepts presented in the classes and show, in practice, different ways of working with product on a daily basis, with the pains and delights of this approach in real life.”
She explained that the speakers are working with product in different contexts – some in environments with a consolidated product culture, others trying to implement product thinking into existing structures, and some who are adopting product thinking right from the beginning of a new project.
Like all Knight Center courses, this MOOC is asynchronous, meaning the activities can be completed on the days and at the times that best suit your schedule. However, there are recommended weekly deadlines so students don’t fall behind.
Gomes will teach the course using videos, presentations, readings, discussion forums and quizzes. Those who successfully complete course requirements are eligible to pay for a certificate of completion. No formal academic credit is associated with the certificate.
Gomes previously taught a popular course on news product strategies, which is now available as a self-directed course in Portuguese that can be taken at any time, from anywhere on journalismcourses.org. There are also self-directed courses on that topic available in English and Spanish.
So, start on your journey to adopting a product mindset and take your journalism to the next level. Register today!