Leadership Development Program for Managers

We are no longer accepting applications. Applicants will be notified in December 2015.

Cultivating Your Power and Influence

AOTA is excited to continue our commitment to leadership development by offering this updated program for occupational therapy managers who want to cultivate their power and influence in their practice setting and within the profession. The future viability of the profession demands that we have solid and skilled leadership at all levels of the profession. This program will assist in meeting the Centennial Vision strategic objective of “building the profession’s capacity to influence and lead.”  This program is open to occupational therapy practitioners with more than 5 years of experience who are currently in management positions. Special consideration will be given to practitioners new to their Rehabilitation/School-Based Occupational Therapy Director position and those who are in large systems overseeing multiple disciplines or large OT departments.

This Leadership Development Program addresses a critical need in the profession by:

  • Reinforcing best leadership practices and applying them to leadership at the mid-management level
  • Driving leadership skills deeply into the profession’s management sector for sustained progress
  • Serving as a tool for developing the next generation of clinically based leaders
  • Building a network of influential leaders at the mid management levels in clinical facilities
  • Providing motivation for occupational therapy practitioners in mid management positions to aspire to ascend to higher positions within their practice settings.
  • Beginning to share success stories of OTs in Executive Management positions & the skill set needed at that level.

The expected outcomes of this program include:

  • Increased leadership and management skills
  • Ability to cultivate your power and influence at your setting
  • Increased confidence
  • Increased ability to think strategically
  • The ability to create a culture of evidence based practice at your setting
  • Increased ability to advocate for the profession in multiple arenas
  • Clear and strengthened relationship with AOTA
  • The creation of a leadership community.

Topics included in the training:

  • Strategic thinking
  • Multi-disciplinary management and supervision
  • Leading effectively
  • Conflict resolution
  • Values clarification
  • Advocacy
  • Building your ability to influence
  • Understanding the concept of power
  • The important role of managers in creating a culture of evidence based practice
  • Skills for Executive Leadership

There will be 15 applicants selected for this leadership development program. Successful applicants must be able to attend a 2.5 day face-to-face-training on Monday, January 11, 2016 through Wednesday, January 13, 2016, at AOTA’s National Office in Bethesda, MD.

There will be a $35 application fee for all applicants.  The successful applicants will pay a modest $150 registration fee for the program, all other travel, meals and hotel costs (Sunday, Monday, & Tuesday nights) will be covered by AOTA. 

Application Process:

Applicants must submit:

  • $35 application fee
  • An up-to-date CV including:
    • Current position and scope of responsibilities
    • Reporting structure for your position
    • Years of experience
    • Specific position (if applicable) that would  be desired as the next step in your career
    • Professional development activities
      • Special attention to Leadership training attended
    • Examples of taking on additional leadership responsibilities in your current setting.
  • A personal letter of interest (no more than 3 pages, single-spaced, 12 point font, min/max words 400/1000) which clearly articulates:
    • Reasons for interest in this program
    • Applicant’s career goals/trajectory
    • Applicants past leadership experiences
    • Applicant’s leadership goals
  • A strong reference letter from a very recent or current employer that speaks to applicant’s current leadership skills and their potential for leadership growth.

Applicants must be members in good standing of AOTA at the time of application and during the program.

No paper applications will be considered. The application site opens Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

All applications must be submitted electronically no later than Tuesday, October 13, 2015.

No application will be considered without the application fee being paid prior to completing the application.

If you have questions about the program, please contact: Maureen Peterson at

Please direct all application submission questions to: Varsha Stein at