Embracing Your Leadership Role – Delegation, Supervision & More

Embracing your leadership role is important in many ways in a personal sense, but what about viewing it from your team’s perspective?

Are they being held back because you haven’t fully stepped into the role?

This week’s new PPMP episode asks us to question exactly that, as Hannah Dunn joins me to chat. Hannah is the Founding Director of D.O.T.S. Occupational Therapy for Children. In this episode, she takes us through her business expansion, recruitment challenges and strategies, as well as her 2021 predictions.

What stands out the most, though, is her journey embracing her own management leadership role. By stepping further away from the clinical side, she’s been able to watch D.O.T.S. grow more than ever before.

This sensational expansion in the last 18 months hasn’t happened by accident. Hannah opens up about the “massive” amount of work involved. Although, it did admittedly get easier the third time around. 

If you’re looking at embracing your leadership role more, but not sure where to start, this episode with Hannah is sure to incite inspiration. And if you’re not, well, everyone can learn something from Hannah’s tenacity.


Shifting from Clinician to Business Owner & Expanding in the Process

After bringing us up to speed on what’s been happening in the last 18 months at D.O.T.S., Hannah reveals the challenges to look out for when expanding. 

More staff means more discussion, more time restraints, and increased pressure being the only director supervising. She also opens up about how to get the right structure for a team, especially when transferring to another suburb or state to build new referral networks and relationships.

Hannah explains how she does zero face-to-face work…aside from the occasional instances where she supports a less experienced OT on site.

She shares her experience tackling increased supervision, policies and procedure developments. Aspects that emerge even more when you’ve got a bigger team across several sites.

What we can take away from Hannah’s experience is not only her perseverance, but also the fact that she used this expansion as an opportunity to grow. She grew in her skill set, confidence, and capability…things we’re always trying to work on as business owners.


Finding the Bright Side to 2020

Like for many of us, COVID-19 threw a spanner in the works at D.O.T.S. But it’s how they dealt with that spanner that is really inspiring to hear.

Hannah explains in the episode how she found that silver lining during such a difficult time. Embracing her leadership role during the pandemic largely revolved around making hard decisions, especially at the very beginning. 

She walks us through how she and her team navigated from those very early days.

So, what was the silver lining? 


Hannah discusses how telehealth became such a major positive to come out of 2020, among others like a reduction in therapist sick days, decreased cancellations, and increased engagement from second parents or carers.

Hannah’s 2020 journey reminds us to try and find that bright spot in everything.

That silver lining that may seem impossible to find at first, but emerges once we become more open. What’s more, it’s these silver linings that can end up benefiting the development of the business…the perfect example being D.O.T.S. and its incredible expansion, reduction in resignations, and improved communication across all teams and sites.

Retention is the New Recruitment

A big part of embracing your leadership role is always going to be recruitment, but retention is arguably an even larger part.

In the episode, Hannah explores the challenges and strategies surrounding recruitment. One of them being the notably challenging landscape it’s become with the increase of NDIS and increased options for people.

Hannah shares how she’s maintained retention at D.O.T.S. in the last couple of years. This included the importance of fostering the team you already have in order to avoid losing anyone.

What retention strategies have you implemented? Could you be doing more?


2021 Predictions

Hannah reveals her business predictions for 2021, reminding us to do the same.

It’s interesting to think about how the pandemic has pushed a lot of us to embrace change.

This can be tied back to the idea of embracing your leadership role to the fullest. No matter what change comes your way, you’ll be equipped with the right knowledge and tools to make the best decisions for your team.

To round out the episode, Hannah also gives her pearls of wisdom for other allied health business owners. From setting structure as much as possible, to getting solid admin support, there is much to take away from Hannah’s tips.


Her story and leadership journey demonstrates the value of taking that leap and stepping out of clinical work. Hannah shows us that once you focus more on management leadership, your impact is actually amplified. You can create remarkable customer service and clinicians, who can then can disperse and spread the ripple of impact.

Are you yet to take that step? What is holding you back? Have you thought about how much your team can grow and the impact you can make by stepping more into your management leadership role? In no world am I saying it’s easy, but it is definitely doable.

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