Nov 21

Celebrating our 'Aspirant occupational therapy' programme this Occupational Therapy Week

Posted on Thursday 4th November 2021

Skills for Care is delighted to announce a positive start to our new ‘Aspirant occupational therapy’ leadership programme.

The new programme is intended to support occupational therapists to progress into senior leadership roles within the sector.

Building on the success of our principal social worker and nurse leaders programmes, we wanted to develop a leadership programme specific to occupational therapists who work in a social care setting.

The leadership programme will be delivered over five days, through a blended learning approach – including face-to-face and virtual delivery. The programme will use a variety of development methods, including action learning techniques, a 360-degree feedback tool, and individual coaching sessions. Networking and collaboration with peers will also be a key component of the programme, providing the tools to increase confidence in being a leader.

The project was launched on 20 October 2021, and we’ll be running this initially as a pilot programme for 2021 and 2022.

We were encouraged to see a high number of expressions of interest and applications for the programme. We’ve selected 13 participants for the first cohort, all of whom are thrilled to see leadership development for occupational therapists being offered.

Participants were selected based on a combination of experience and job level, geographical coverage, and supervisory responsibilities. Diversity is important to us and so we’re proud that six of our participants have a diverse background, ensuring that this programme is inclusive and representative.

Activities and modules participants will undertake through the programme include:

  • understanding yourself as a leader
  • understanding your system
  • managing and leading complexity
  • influencing your system
  • sharing good practice and the outcomes from a mini-leadership project.

We also redirected participants working at a principal occupational therapist level to apply for the five occupational therapy places offered alongside our established principal social worker programme. This continues the collaborative learning opportunities across the principal occupational therapist and principal social worker roles, which has worked effectively in previous programmes.

The ‘Aspirant occupational therapy’ programme will run until March 2022.