I’ve always felt a little insecure about my business acumen and can’t help but compare myself to my friends with master’s degrees and MBAs. I’ve never been given much in professional development over the years and I’ve found it challenging to ask for that type of thing from employers.

Enter the Morning Brew Business Essentials Accelerator online class for professionals. Before I get into the nitty gritty, I know what you’re thinking: isn’t Morning Brew that daily newsletter that spells out trends and headlines in world news, the stock market, global business and hot topics? Well, yes.

The company has started an education arm, so to speak, and they’re quickly developing and rolling out education opportunities for business professionals who want to connect with others, find a sense of community and learn business skills in a modern way. That’s going to be the emphasis here.

You’d want to take the MB/A (as it was called when I enrolled) online class experience if you’re feeling like your resume needs a boost, and if you’re seeking an outlet for a diverse (and somewhat quick) training on business ideas, topics and case studies.

It’s also a GREAT way to use a professional development credit from your employer, if you don’t want to buy another book or Skillshare class!

I finished my MB/A experience after an 8-week crash business course, and came out on the other side feeling more confident as a professional with a new arsenal of cool vocabulary words I can throw around at work.

The following review is not sponsored in any way by any organization, and is my honest experience of going into this innovative and informative education cohort knowing no one who had done it before!

Helpful Tip

Get a $100 credit to a Morning Brew education class! When you see “Referred by” on your application, put Halfhalftravel, and you’ll get $100 off as our gift to you!

What is Morning Brew?

Morning Brew is a media company that started with a newsletter. Maybe you saw in our article about how to stay connected while working remotely that subscribing to a daily newsletter like this can keep you in the know, even if you’re living somewhere far away.

Actually, my friend from college Neal Freyman happens to be one of the head writers of the main newsletter that goes out every single morning (and by the way, he has nothing to do with the education component of MB, so this review is still, as mentioned, not sponsored by anyone).

Morning Brew also has a popular YouTube channel, a set of newsletters you can subscribe to, ranging from emerging tech, to Marketing Brew to personal finance (the “Money Scoop”), and now, a set of business classes that aren’t newsletters at all!

I’ve subscribed to a whole set of them, and yes, my email inbox is quite a busy place; however, I find these newsletters really useful and engaging if you just want to know what’s going on around you and you prefer to have it come to you rather than going into the Internet to find it.

Interested? Sign up here (it’s free).

What is the Morning Brew Business Accelerator?

The Morning Brew Business Accelerator is a class I honestly was not even looking for.

Morning Brew has designed their education programs to be heavy on knowledge and interactive learning (in a fun way) and intent on relationships rather than just broad “networking.”

I suppose these business-related programs were designed for professionals who are simply looking for some type of career acceleration and are having a hard time finding that.

Sure, everyone wants to get promoted, “do better at work,” make more money and find the next best thing, but how?

How did I find out about the Business Essentials Accelerator course?

The truth is, I found out about the “MB/A” class from a promotional email because I’m a Morning Brew newsletter subscriber. I found that a lot of my co-Brewdents (as we are called while in the program) found the program in the same exact way. That is the power of marketing, people!

In fact, the email I’m describing was running a contest. It said to enter the contest drawing, and you could win a free pass to the MB/A program for free. Why not? I entered my name and my email, and waited.

A few days.

Spoiler: I did not win, but they got me hooked. I emailed back some helpful staff about the total class fee, because now I was a little bit invested, and they sent me a helpful template email that I could use to send the leadership at my company, in hopes of having my “tuition” sponsored.

Guess what: this is where I was successful! I was able to have my company cover the cost of the program as a professional training, and within a few days, I was attending my first “primer,” which is an info session on Zoom with several other attendees just like me from around the country (and the world).

How long is the Morning Brew Business Essentials Accelerator program?

My Business Essentials Accelerator program was eight weeks. It’s one of Morning Brew’s “Accelerator” programs, which are aimed at helping develop “hyper-relevant” skills in an intensive sort of professional learning environment.

This was a very sweet spot for a length of time, because before you knew it, it was winding down and we were “graduating.” As the goals of this program were to form authentic relationships and a solid professional (and diverse!) network of individuals with whom I felt I’d made connections, that is surely something that happened in this amount of time.

Morning Brew offers a few programs in the six-to-eight-week range, and I’ll get into those toward the end of this review.

The company also offers “Sprints,” which are slightly different. If you work in tech, you’re familiar with the term “sprint” as a specific project or goal that has to get done in a set period of time.

Morning Brew’s Sprint courses dive into specific professional capabilities in only two to four weeks. You could build out your resume with these types of programs, or hone in on a skill that you can list on your resume.

You can explore the Sprints here, and when you apply, remember to put “Halfhalftravel” as the person who referred you, to get $100 off the cost of a program!

So like, what is this program and how does it work?

The program can be described in a few ways. The focus is on being holistic, which definitely was accurate. Among the facets of this program are:

Individual readings that also contain multimedia (if you learn best with videos and audio). These are called Foundations. The great thing about Foundations is that you’ll have access to all the texts for life.

Each chapter has modules, and at the end of a topic you get a quiz and an optional individual assignment. You’re also encouraged to use Morning Brew’s communication platform to discuss topics with other Brewdents.

Weekly group syncs with your “board” group, a set of cohort members roughly in your time zone. You get to discuss open-ended business topics, everything from time management to leadership styles and productivity tips.

Group projects, called Decision Dossiers: there are three DD group projects, taking place every two weeks (with no DD project in the last two weeks). You can opt in to these groups, meaning if you opt in, you should give it your all, but you can also opt out if you know you have a lot going on with work.

DDs end with presentations that are either slide decks or group recordings, and then you get feedback, recording-style, from business experts in a few days.

Cohort Collisions: I’m a big talker, and I’m not shy, so this was one of my favorite ways to create relationships during my Morning Brew education experience. As mentioned above, the CC events were once every two weeks for the first six weeks, and allowed me to meet and get introduced to professionals from all walks of life, all over the country.

One more thing! The speaker series(es): Once every one or two weeks, and at our graduation event, we got to hear from great speakers in the business world, and it wasn’t dry or boring or anything like that.

These speakers are entrepreneurs, innovators and founders, who have done groundbreaking things in their careers and have great advice to give. Stick around for the Q&A sessions where you can ask questions live on Zoom!

My takeaways: The community

I really liked the people I met through my Morning Brew Business Essentials program. I’m also huge into online communities, as I talk about in one of our remote work productivity articles.

I didn’t know this when I started the program, but after ‘graduating’ and completing your course, you become a member of the alumni Slack workspace, where the members of every cohort are added as they finish. I think this community is going to be HUGE, and valuable! I’m here for it.

My takeaways: The speaker series

My favorite speaker was the founder of a mental health startup, who shined a whole bunch of different lights on how mental health is dealt with in the workspace and how it can be considered a fluid and innovative topic to work on as professionals.

I also thought Chuck Swoboda was awesome, and totally different, and we all received his book, “The Innovator’s Spirit.”

My takeaways: Expectations vs. results

Honestly, I had no idea what to expect. I haven’t taken a class in ages, and I was really itching to do something new and valuable for myself, so I had that going for me.

My expectations were … hmm, I didn’t have many. I was happy that I got my company to sponsor me to take my Business Essentials class, and figured I’d get some cool tidbits and business tips from the class as a whole.

I think I’d say my expectations were thrown out the door during the first Cohort Collisions event, followed by a meet-and-greet with my weekly board group, and then a super interactive Lunch & Learn with one of Morning Brew’s featured staff-people who had interesting things to say about their career.

I love having a packed schedule, and Morning Brew kept me so busy that the weeks just flew by. I had Morning Brew events most nights of the week, which I was ready for (and scheduled my home workouts around them) and pushed myself to make time for reading Foundations.

I had a lot of fun being innovative and creative (two hallmark skills to be working on!) during my DD group projects, and felt like no one could possibly feel “left out” because there were so many ways to contribute, despite our backgrounds, ages, fields of work and special skills.

Overall, I rate this program 11 out of 10.

Helpful Tip

Remember! Before hitting “Submit” on your application to start a program, snag your $100 discount on a Morning Brew accelerator class by putting “Halfhalftravel” as the person who referred you! You will receive $100 off the price of the program, no questions asked!

How much does the Morning Brew Business Accelerator cost?

As I learn more about Morning Brew’s offerings (that are changing week by week, with more growth and variety all the time!), I have seen that the price does tend to differ based on the program itself.

At the time of writing, the cost of the Morning Brew Business Accelerator is $1599.

The Business Analytics Accelerator program, geared more at quantitative analysis skills, lasts seven weeks and costs $1399.

Lastly, the Leadership Accelerator Application (which I can tell is going to be very popular) starts at $1999 for the ‘founding cohort’ which is currently recruiting, and will be $2499 for the cohorts that begin after the first one.

If you are outside the US, I’ll recommend looking at the fine print to determine if any of the programs are open to US-based participants only (this might be due to time zone and live scheduled events).

Please note that prices are bound to change, and I will update this article as often as I can in order to stay accurate.

What value does the Business Accelerator provide?

I found that the Morning Brew Business Accelerator program was valuable in opening my way of thinking.

If you consider that your way of solving problems can be shaped by the organization at which you work, or former trainings you’ve had, it is an absolutely great thing to engage in broadening this mindset.

For a lot of us in the program, working in group projects was both challenging and enlightening. It was challenging because some group participants were more vocal, reachable and dependable than others, and it was enlightening because I was constantly floored at how smart and creative my fellow group mates were. I hope they felt the same way about me!

Working in group projects as a professional brings you back to both, “OMG, the last time I did this was in college,” and, “Isn’t it great when the power of this group is greater than any of us individually?”

Other value that this program provides was in the diverse array of speakers brought in for weekly events. Some were entrepreneurs, some were business leaders, and all gave incredibly insightful talks and presentations, ending with totally interactive and open Q&A sessions.

Again, a common theme for me was opening my way of professional thought and seeking ways to be more innovative in my own work.

If you’re going to be asking your employer to cover the cost of any Morning Brew learning programs, first off, use this link for companies, and second, emphasize that a program like this is a convenient and modern way to “level up” in your career from the comfort of home on weeknights.

What types of people take the Business Accelerator class?

Most immediately, I was blown away by the geographic diversity of the members of my Business Essentials Accelerator cohort.

Was it geographically diverse?

In the first meeting, the primer, before the program even began, I remember that there were professionals calling in from all the time zones in the US, and there was someone in England.

As we got more into the thick of it, one of my favorite semiweekly events was “Cohort Collisions,” which is aptly named. Like I talk about in remote work trends I’ve found, networking is crucial to growing as a profession.

The “Cohort Collision” events are speed networking sessions in which you get put into randomized four- or five-person breakout rooms in Zoom. From there, you get to answer both personal and professional questions, and get to know each other. Always remember: take down everyone’s name for LinkedIn connecting!

During those breakout rooms, I met people located in Louisiana, Texas, Boston and some people only several miles away in Manhattan (I’m in Brooklyn). We’d talk about everything, really, and then also discuss our professions.

Was it professionally diverse?

If you really want to scare yourself away from doing something like this “MB/A” class, you can tell yourself that everyone will be a finance director or sales executive.

That’s not the case at all.

I met folks who worked in sales, operations, education, medicine, startups, larger corporations and more. There were small business owners, freelancers and people who work full-time and also freelance, like me.

For me, as someone who loves having new connections and meeting new people in new cities, a big takeaway is having lots of new LinkedIn connections. I haven’t even had time to comb through where everyone works, but the friendliest thing is that everyone is connecting with one another on LinkedIn, only strengthening all of our networks, professionally.

How can I learn more about the Morning Brew Business Accelerator program?

You can learn more about the Morning Brew Business Essentials Accelerator at this link, which shows a bit more about the course curriculum.

This program is for ambitious professionals who want to grow their careers, make authentic connections and work on core business competencies in an interactive environment.

Which other business education programs does Morning Brew offer?

Morning Brew is offering more programs every time I blink, so don’t miss out. Aside from the longer programs that range from six to eight weeks, there are those Sprint-style classes I mentioned, which will give you a two-to-four-week experience.

For the Accelerator programs, a quick rundown of the offerings are:

  • Business Essentials Accelerator
  • Business Analytics Accelerator
  • Leadership Accelerator

As for the Sprint programs, which focus on a skill:

  • Growth: Growing an Audience
  • Storytelling: Perfect Your Pitch
  • … and more, coming soon

What do alumni get when they complete a program?

This is where it gets cool, and I hope I’m not spilling the beans.

Once you have your graduation ceremony (on Zoom), you get sent some cool MB swag in the mail, you get 10% off future programs in the Morning Brew “eduverse,” and most importantly, in my opinion, access to an alumni-only Slack community, where there’s a lot going on.

I’ve said too much! I think your next step is to apply to a program that interests you, and on your application put your referrer as “Halfhalftravel” to get that sweet $100 discount from us!

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