Managerial Finance

In business, every decision affects the firm’s long-term value and, in many cases, the world more broadly. As a manager and leader, your actions have an impact on the financial growth and value of your organization, whether your background is in finance or not. To contribute constructively, it’s vital to understand the fundamental questions, thought processes, and choices that occur internally in your firm — whether it’s a start-up or multibillion-dollar conglomerate.

The Managerial Finance online program aims to empower professionals with non-financial expertise and experience to understand, participate in, and confidently communicate opinions on the major financial decisions made within their organization. By demystifying corporate finance and making its logic accessible, this program unpacks the three fundamental questions of corporate finance: investment decisions (allocation of capital), funding decisions (the sources of capital), and payout decisions (returning capital to investors). Learn how these principles can be applied in any organizational setting to achieve optimal business objectives. Over six weeks, you’ll gain skills that will support strategic decision-making and aid you in advancing your professional career.

Online Programs
High-Performance Marketing Communications

Who Should Attend

This program is specifically designed for senior professionals who don’t have financial backgrounds but are in a position where financial acumen will help them stand out in their role. This includes leaders and executives who are responsible for strategic decision-making and driving performance, and need to progress beyond basic financial jargon. The program will also benefit managers looking to build on their core finance skills, in order to make better financially informed decisions, as well as those aspiring to these sorts of roles.

Key Benefits

Understand Corporate Finance

Discover the foundational principles behind financial decisions and learn to use financial statements to inform these decisions.

Develop Your Intuition

Unpack the mechanics of executive finance to make strategic financial decisions and participate in financial conversations with confidence.

Create Value Through Investment

Explore the risk versus return trade-offs when considering an investment, and learn the multiple valuation techniques behind mergers and acquisitions.

Program Content

Module 1: Introduction to Corporate Finance and Financial Statements

Learn how to identify financial decisions based on the fundamental principles of corporate finance.

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental principles required for effective financial decision-making
  • Use financial information to inform decisions based on valuation techniques
  • Distinguish between the strategic objectives and the tactics of a firm while considering market efficiency
  • Attribute the objectives of a firm that lead to effective financial decision-making

Module 2: Measuring Risk: Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM)

Discover how investors measure and consider risk when exploring new investment opportunities.

  • Describe investors' methodology for quantifying risk
  • Articulate the CAPM logic through application to a portfolio
  • Analyze CAPM when measuring the risk of a new investment
  • Assess the risk and associated return of an additional investment in a portfolio

Module 3: Investment Decision: Discount Rate — Cost of Capital

Explore how firms determine their cost of capital to make investment decisions.

  • Demonstrate an understanding of what the discount rate measures
  • Discuss the assumptions of the cost of capital and their implications in practice
  • Calculate a firm's cost of capital using the returns on debt instruments
  • Justify the variables in the cost of capital calculation

Module 4: Investment Decision: Cash Flow Forecasting and Financial Modeling

Explore the assumptions when forecasting cash flows to determine the net present value (NPV).

  • Articulate the variables in a discounted cash flow model
  • Extrapolate the assumptions to forecast cash flows for the appropriate time horizon
  • Evaluate long-term projects using their terminal value
  • Formulate a discounted cash flow model

Module 5: Funding Decision: Capital Structure

Discover the six reasons why capital structure affects the value of the firm.

  • Describe the different sources of funding for a firm
  • Articulate the effect of funding decisions on the value of a firm
  • Correlate how the objectives of the firm affect the funding decision
  • Assess the determinants of the optimal capital structure for different firms

Module 6: Multiples Valuation in the Context of Mergers and Acquisitions

Discover the uses of the multiples valuation technique in the context of mergers and acquisitions.

  • Determine a valuation multiple based on the measure and metric of valuation
  • Choose a comparable firm for a multiples valuation
  • Investigate the mechanics of the multiples valuation technique
  • Compare the discounted cash flow and multiples valuation techniques
  • Assess the rationale behind mergers and acquisitions


Mitchell A. Petersen - Glen Vasel Professor of Finance; Director of the Heizer Center for Private Equity and Venture Capital


What is the program about?

Managerial Finance is designed to empower professionals with non-financial expertise and experience to understand, participate in, and confidently communicate opinions on the major financial decisions made within their organization. By demystifying corporate finance and making its logic accessible, this program unpacks the three fundamental questions of corporate finance: investment decisions (allocation of capital), funding decisions (the sources of capital), and payout decisions (returning capital to investors).

What is the learning experience?

Your learning experience will consist of frameworks delivered via video lectures, live webinars, real world examples and case studies, application of frameworks through weekly activities, customized assignments and quizzes, discussion boards, and faculty engagement.

What is the program format?

The program consists of 6 modules delivered over 7 weeks online. Learners can expect to dedicate 7-9 hours per week to watch videos, complete assignments and participate in discussions. Modules are opened at the beginning of each week and have quizzes/assessments at the module’s conclusion. Learners may choose to engage with the program module all in one sitting or in smaller segments of time throughout the week. While the modules do not close, access to assignments is closed each week.

Could a learner choose to opt out of some topics?

No. This is an online program in which a topic module is introduced each week and the learner is expected to watch the video lectures, participate in the live webinars, complete the exercises/activities and take the mastery quiz at the end of each week to progress to the subsequent week’s topic.

Are any of the sessions delivered in real time (live)?

There will be live webinars, led by faculty and/or subject matter experts, delivered during the course of the program via a video conferencing platform. These sessions provide learners an opportunity to listen and ask questions, and while they are valuable in enhancing the overall experience, attendance is not mandatory. All live sessions are recorded for later viewing.

What methods will be used for grading and evaluations?

Kellogg program leaders will review assignments, discussions and exercises to determine participants’ understanding of the material.

How much time is allocated to complete assignments?

The due date for submitting assignments is typically within 7 days of the module opening, but can be as long as 14 days, depending on the scope of the assignment. However, learners may request deadline extensions to accommodate business and personal conflicts that may arise during the program timeframe. Reach out to the program tutor or success manager to discuss any challenges you may have in completing assignments.

Can participation in this program be counted as credit toward a degree, either at Kellogg, Northwestern University or another academic institution?

No. Executive Education offers only non-degree programs and each participant receives a certificate of completion at the end of the program. This certificate does not count as credit toward a degree. In addition, at this time, our online programs do not count as credit toward a Kellogg Executive Scholar Certificate.

Does the program offer community engagement for learners?

Yes, participants can create a profile, connect and collaborate with peers, and interact with academic/industry experts such as program leaders and teaching assistants. Office hours will be held during the program and all participants are welcome to join in with questions or to discuss assignments.

What are the requirements for accessing the program?

Participants will need the following to access the Managerial Finance program:

  • Valid email address
  • Computing device connected to the internet (Mac/PC/laptop, tablet or smartphone)
  • The latest version of your preferred browser to access our learning platform (though not required, we recommend using Google Chrome when accessing the Online Campus for optimal experience)
  • Microsoft Office Suite (PowerPoint, Word, Excel) and PDF viewer to access content such as documents, spreadsheets, presentations, PDF files, and transcripts
  • Additional software and resources may be required for certain programs — this will be communicated upon registration and/or at the beginning of the program
  • PLEASE NOTE: Google, Vimeo and YouTube may be utilized in the program delivery

Do the programs offer a certificate?

Yes. Participants will receive a digital certificate of completion from Kellogg following a successful conclusion to the program. Since this program is graded as a pass or fail, participants must receive an 80% to pass and obtain the certificate. This digital certificate can be shared with colleagues and posted on LinkedIn. (PLEASE NOTE: We do not provide reports of assessments, or “transcripts,” since this is a non-degree program.)

Who is 2U./GetSmarter and what is their relationship with Kellogg Executive Education?

Kellogg Executive Education is partnering with GetSmarter, a brand of 2U, Inc., an online education provider, to develop and deliver this program. By working with 2U, Inc./Get Smarter, we are able to provide broader access to Executive Education, beyond our on-campus offerings, in a collaborative and engaging format that is consistent with Kellogg’s standard of quality.

Additional questions?

Please contact us by calling 847-467-6018 or email us at

2023 Session

September 13 - November 14, 2023

Start: September 20 at 12:00 AM

End: November 14 at 12:00 AM

Accepting registrations through September 17


Kellogg School of Management

James L. Allen Center
2169 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208