One critical function of the AOTA Board of Directors is to choose an Executive Director for the
Association. With the retirement of Executive Director Fred Somers there are some very knowledgeable and experienced shoes to fill. Given the time frame the new AOTA officers who will take office on July 1 may be involved in the final decision. For this reason I am sharing my thoughts about how I would approach interviews of final candidates. I have much experience over my roles as a manager, as a Program Director of an educational program and as a Board of Director member of a community-based organization in hiring at many different levels. My typical focus is an experiential-based approach asking candidates to give examples from their background and experience to tell me about the type of employee they would be.
An Executive Director of a health related professional membership organization such as the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) needs to be someone with a documented history of strong leadership and effective organizational management. I’ve been involved in a lot of hiring and searches in my career. I tend to use a behaviorally based interview approach. I would look for someone who can give examples from their experience of when they have been able to or would be able to:
During my two terms on the AOTA Board I was involved in the annual performance review of the ED six times and have a good understanding of the duties and responsibilities. I’ve had the opportunity to directly witness great successes and times when things could have gone better. I hope to have the opportunity to be involved in the hiring of the new ED although that process could be complete or near complete by July 1. I also hope that we may find an occupational therapy practitioner with the skills, experience and qualities to take the lead, but association management is a field within itself and the best candidate may not be an occupational therapy practitioner.
If others have something I left off of my list that you would be looking for?
The opinions expressed in my blog are personal and neither represent the views of my employer nor any organization.