allied health, career development, management, upward mobility



  1. Bender, Denise G. JD, PT, GCS


Career ladders designed for health care practitioners are not always long enough to reach beyond the top rungs of clinical practice. Limited upward mobility can result in dissatisfaction and potential loss of experienced staff members. The same skills that allow practitioners to function successfully in patient care can be tapped into to prepare clinicians to move upward in administrative positions. This has already occurred successfully in the nursing profession. Managers should take advantage of the yearly performance evaluation to identify those health professionals who are interested in advancement. Using a strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats analysis, the manager and clinician can work together to develop a developmental plan that will build on existing strengths while developing the less prepared areas. Managerial skill enhancement should be combined with mentoring from persons already filling administrative roles to enable the clinician to develop a network of contacts. A planned approach should enable interested clinicians to successfully transition from hands-on practice into managerial positions.