Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto

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Advanced Health Leadership

Advanced Health Leadership Program

What healthcare executives need to ensure the future of our systems.


The Advanced Health Leadership Program targets current and potential members of executive teams in the health system; it focuses on the development of the next generation of health leaders. It seeks to improve their understanding and skills in the areas of leadership, management of change, emotional and political intelligence and Integrative ThinkingTM.

The program has been redesigned to reflect changes in health systems across Canada (e.g. home care and primary care reform, new funding models, technological shifts and resulting opportunities, evolving structures, human resource challenges, financial sustainability and greater demand for integration and quality). This program is designed to equip senior leaders in the health and life sciences sector with new strengths to play a leadership role in a changing health system.

The Health Leadership program was the most valuable and intensive learning experience of my career. Every health care leader today requires health leadership training to do their job appropriately and effectively.

James G. Wright | Surgeon-in-Chief, VP Medical
The Hospital for Sick Children

Program Details

The Advanced Health Leadership Program will launch its fourteenth offering in 2020. The program focuses on leadership competencies required to implement the foundational building blocks of personal, organizational and system change. Through a combination of health leadership development and management school expertise, the program provides a challenging opportunity for personal leadership development for current and potential members of executive teams working in the sector. The seniority and diversity of participants creates a unique forum and network for discussion, reflection and learning that will have immediate and lasting relevance to their careers.

Program Themes

System, Organizational and Personal Leadership: Successful leadership means determining what to do under conditions of great uncertainty, while considering an enormous amount of information and the multiple and conflicting interests of many stakeholders. Additionally, leaders in health care are often required to accomplish their objectives by working with (not through) people over whom they have little or no formal control. That is, they influence the thoughts and behaviours of others through persuasion rather than coercion.  Lastly, leaders are architects, designing organizations and environments in which staff can maximize individual performance and the performance of their organizations.

Management of Change: Understanding and leading change effectively requires the adoption of a systematic approach to change and a process for working with individuals and groups, both inside and outside the organization. Learners will develop a range of strategies and tactics that will assist them in designing and implementing major change initiatives.

Emotional and Political Intelligence: Effective leaders are self-aware. They understand their own emotional responses and the impact their behaviour has on others. This constitutes emotional intelligence and connects closely to political intelligence, which involves the development of sophisticated skills in partnership, network building, influencing, negotiating and management of complex problems. Learners in this program will be able, in a confidential and secure environment, to study their own and others' reactions to common group and organizational experiences and consider how their behaviour is affected by both conscious and unconscious forces.

Integrative ThinkingTM and Managerial Tools: Integration is the hallmark of effective health systems.  As health systems move aggressively towards implementing organizational system changes, the ability to think integratively will be paramount.  Integrative thinkers build models rather than choose between them. Their models include consideration of numerous variables such as clients, employees, other health service providers, cost structures, health sector evolution and legislative environment. Their models capture the complicated, multi-faceted and multi-directional causal relationships between the key variables in any problem. Integrative thinkers consider the problem as a whole, rather than breaking it down and farming out the parts. They creatively resolve tensions without making costly trade-offs, turning challenges into opportunities. Health sector leaders will be exposed to a range of integrative thinking frameworks and tools and will develop the means to adapt and apply them to their organizations.

When people are pushed out of their comfort zone, that’s when breakthrough learning occurs. The program helped me to articulate what kind of leader I want to be, and provided me with the skills and tools to take me to another level.

Stacey Daub | President & Chief Executive Officer
Headwaters Health Care Centre

Who Should Attend

The program is aimed at current or potential senior members of leadership teams in health service provider organizations, agencies and other health system organizations. It is designed to draw a mix of clinical and non-clinical leaders. Typical job titles include Chief Executive Officer, Chief of Nursing or Medicine, Chief Financial Officer, Vice President, Director of Marketing, General Manager, Senior Consultant, Chief Operating Officer, Executive Director, and Clinical Department Head.

While most of the places in the program are for participants coming from publicly funded organizations (transfer payment agencies), participants from private sector organizations that support the publicly funded system are encouraged to apply.

Selection Criteria:

The selection committee uses a variety of criteria in its participant selection decisions:

  • on track to be a senior leader (clinical or non-clinical), executive, or CEO in the next 5 years
  • currently on an executive team or evidence of executive-level leadership (approximately 10-20 years of experience)
  • responsibility for financial and/or clinical performance
  • history of successfully managing and motivating staff
  • record of initiative and achievement (e.g. successfully led a change process that delivered tangible results)
  • experience of successfully working with a broad set of stakeholders, including: clinicians; professional associations; governments; and other provider organizations
  • indications of career progression and ambition based on resume and personal statement
  • strong letter of support from a CEO or Board Chair

The faculty were amazing, and my classmates were also wonderful. The opportunity to interact with people spanning the spectrum of health care is truly unique. The course material itself challenged me intellectually and on a personal level, it has given me a whole new perspective on my role and how to leverage my personal strengths to maximum effect.

Dr. Richard F. McLean | VP, Medical Affairs and Quality
Hamilton Health Sciences


The next offering of this program begins in January 2020.

Program days begin at 8:30am and typically end between 5:00pm and 6:00pm. This includes breakfast, lunch and coffee breaks.  Breakfast is served between 8:00am and 8:30am. Some evenings may run later if there is a dinner scheduled.

  • Module I: January 27–31, 2020
  • Module II: March 30–April 3, 2020
  • Module III: June 1–5, 2020

As a community-based health leader this unique course was invaluable because it provided research based leadership principles that can be directly applied to our most pressing health system challenges. AHLP challenged my own leadership through its strategic design of course content and having a wide spectrum of health care leaders working together.

John Neufeld | Executive Director
House of Friendship


Rotman Executive Program faculty are known for their ability to translate the latest research into practical applications for the workplace, and to transmit skills to participants with the best teaching techniques. Industry leaders contribute to our programs to bring you the most up-to-date best practices and a wealth of real-world experience.

Brian R. Golden, Featured Faculty

Vice-Dean, MBA Programs

Brian Golden is the Vice-Dean of MBA Programs; the Sandra Rotman Chair in Health Sector Strategy at the University of Toronto and The University Health Network (joint appointment Faculty of Medicine); Professor of Strategic Management at Rotman; Co-Academic Director, Global Executive MBA for Healthcare and the Life Sciences and Executive Director for Collaborative For Health Sector Strategy. Brian conducts research and teaches in the areas of strategic change and implementation, health system integration and funding, governance, organizational strategy and leadership. Among his published work are articles in The Canadian Medical Association Journal, Health Policy, Healthcare Quarterly, Healthcare Papers, Healthcare Management Science, The Annals of Pharmacotherapy, Clinical Oncology, The Strategic Management Journal, Management Science, Administrative Science Quarterly Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, and The Harvard Business Review.

Meet the faculty and instructors teaching in the Advanced Health Leadership Program

Rob Devitt » David Knowles » Jennifer Riel »

How to Apply, Fees and Available Scholarships

Before proceeding to the online application, please take the time to read the application policies. Also, please note that during the application process you will be required to upload three documents:

1) A resume

2) A one or two page personal statement that indicates:
  • why you wish to participate in this program and why now
  • your career aspirations for the next 5 to 10 years
  • your current responsibilities (e.g., financial, clinical, for patients or clients, for staff)
  • a record of accomplishment
  • a summary of your experience working successfully with a broad set of stakeholders, including: clinicians; professional associations; governments; and other provider organizations

3) A reference letter

Please provide a reference letter from the most senior person in your organization. If you are CEO or Executive Director (in organizations where ED is the most senior staff position), the letter should be written by the Board Chair. These letters are important and should be detailed and specific with respect to why they believe you will benefit from this program and how they believe you will contribute to other participants. We recommend you share the admissions criteria with letter-writers in advance.

Apply NowMOD I starts JAN 27, 2020

Application Deadline

Please note that the application deadline for the 2020 offering is Monday, September 23, 2019. Please contact Reema Chaudhry at with any questions.

Program Fee and Scholarships

We expect to be able to provide substantial scholarships to participants coming from non-profit organizations, thanks to a generous gift from a private donor.  The base program fee is $15,000, and scholarships are expected to range from $5,100 to $13,100 scaled according to the base budget of the participant's primary place of employment.

Organization's Budget* Corresponding
(Based on Past Funding)
(or participant’s organization)
pays (to be confirmed):
<$24 million $13,100 $1,900
$25–$49 million $11,600 $3,400
$50–$99 million $9,600 $5,400
$100–$249 million $7,100 $7,900
>$250 million $5,100 $9,900

 *Applies to Transfer Payment Agencies

The program fee covers tuition, all program materials, supplies and class-day meals (breakfast, lunch and snacks). Participants will be responsible for travel, accommodation and evening meals. We strongly recommend that each applicant arrange their organization's support (e.g. time away, any necessary funding) prior to submitting an application.

While most of the places in the program are for participants coming from publicly funded organizations (transfer payment agencies), participants from private sector organizations that support the publicly funded system are encouraged to apply.

Looking for something else? You might also be interested in one of these related programs

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Dates and Fees

15-day program (three 5-day modules)


Module I: January 27–31, 2020
Module II: March 30–April 3, 2020
Module III: June 1–5, 2020


Rotman School of Management, Toronto, Ontario


Participant profile:
Senior members of leadership teams in health service provider organizations, agencies and other health system organizations


Questions? We're here to help!
Speak to Client Services Manager Reema Chaudhry about the program.

Tel: 416.946.7514

Apply NowModule I starts January 27, 2020

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