Leadership training in endocrinology fellowship? A survey of program directors and recent graduates

Mark W. True*, Irene Folaron, Jana L. Wardian, Jeffrey A. Colburn, Tom J. Sauerwein, Darrick J. Beckman, Joseph K. Kluesner, Joshua M. Tate, Sky D. Graybill, Richard P. Davis, Andrew O. Paulus, David R. Carlsen, Jack E. Lewi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Context: There is growing recognition that more physician leaders are needed to navigate the next era of medicine. Objective: To determine current opinions about leadership training in endocrinology fellowship programs. Design/Participants: Twenty-seven-question survey addressing various aspects of leadership training to current nationwide fellowship program directors (PDs) and fellowship graduates since 2010. Intervention: In partnership with the Endocrine Society, the electronic survey was advertised primarily via direct e-mail. It was open from March through July 2016. Main Outcome Measures: The survey addressed leadership traits, importance of leadership training, preferred timing, and content of leadership training. Results: Forty-six of 138 PDs (33.3%) and 147 of 1769 graduates (8.3%) completed the survey. Among PDs and graduates, there was strong agreement (>95%) about important leadership characteristics, including job knowledge, character traits, team-builder focus, and professional skills. PDs (64.5%) and graduates (60.8%) favored teaching leadership skills during fellowship, with PDs favoring mentoring/ coaching (75.0%), direct observation of staff clinicians (72.5%), and seminars (72.5%). Graduates favored a variety of approaches. Regarding topics to include in a leadership curriculum, PDs responded that communication skills (97.5%), team building (95.0%), professional skills (90.0%), clinic management (87.5%), strategies to impact the delivery of endocrinology care (85.0%), and personality skills (82.5%) were most important. Graduates responded similarly, with .80% agreement for each topic. Finally, most PDs (89%) expressed a desire to incorporate more leadership training into their programs. Conclusions: Our survey suggests a need for leadership training in endocrinology fellowships. More work is needed to determine how best to meet this need.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-185
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the Endocrine Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Fellowship
  • Graduates
  • Leadership
  • Program directors
  • Survey
  • Training


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