Physician Leadership Institute (PLI)

Why choose a CMA-SMA In-house PLI course?

No matter where you are in your career - practising physician, medical student or resident - the CMA Physician Leadership Institute (PLI) will prepare you to be a more effective leader. The CMA PLI is the Canadian Medical Association’s leadership development program. With targeted funding, the SMA has brought the CMA PLI series in-house, delivering the courses at a reduced cost to our members.

When you enroll in a CMA PLI course, you can be confident that:

  • course content and examples will be practical and relevant to health care and medical practice in Canada

  • instructors are subject-matter and education experts with an intimate knowledge of Canada’s health care environment

  • learning approaches incorporate multiple perspectives, include real-life, real-time activities and promote rich problem-solving among peers

  • classmates are medical and health care professionals with interests and needs similar to your own

CMA-SMA PLI Costs: after the SMA subsidy, each course seat costs only $650.

Attention: Medical students and residents

The SMA will sponsor three seats for students and three seats for residents in each course. If you are interested in one of these sponsored seats, please contact:

Students: SMSS SMA Representatives at

Residents: Resident Doctors of Saskatchewan at 

Contact Delilah Dueck for more information: (306) 657-4568 or

2019 CMA-SMA In-house PLIs

Strategic Thinking for Results

Date: May 31 - Jun. 1, 2019
Location: Saskatoon – SMA Offices

Course description:

Creating a roadmap for your health care organization is no simple feat. An effective strategic plan needs room to grow, to demonstrate a strong understanding of the health care sector, establish a set of actions to achieve results and transform systems, and must be measurable. This course provides in-depth information on the strategic planning process. You will tackle real-life strategic issues with other participants exploring strategies, such as appreciative inquiry and effective change leadership, to engage key stakeholders in assisting with implementation of your plan. And, finally, you’ll learn methods for monitoring the plan’s progress to ensure that it is responding to your organization’s needs. Many individuals have left this program with an ability to use the content to develop robust, high-quality strategic plans for their organizations. So will you.

Return on investment:

•Describe the utility, purpose and elements of strategic thinking and planning.

•Scan the environment for driving forces, impediments and opportunities that should inform future strategy and planning.

•Set direction by establishing a patient-centered vision, values and measures of success for the implementation of a strategic plan.

•Strategically align decisions with the vision and values by accessing and using evidence to shape strategic direction.

•Use systems thinking to balance short-term demands with long-termpriorities.

•Identify how to engage colleagues, staff, and shareholders.

Please note:  The CMA/Joule will send you sign-in information on thier Learning Management System (LMS) in order to access course documents, certificate of attendance and all other important information needed for this course. Pre-course material will also be sent out by Joule and will need to be completed prior to attending this course.  

Register here.
Pay here.

Course presenters: Gaetan Tardif  & Graham Dickson

Managing People Effectively  

Date: Jun. 21-22, 2019
Location: Regina (Location to be determined)

Course description: 

Some physicians achieve leadership—perhaps you want to “make a difference”. Others have leadership thrust upon them—maybe it’s your turn, or nobody else will do it. Likely neither type has any training on how to be a people manager. Often, physicians are expected to learn by osmosis; their lessons, too often, come from making mistakes. Given the complexity of health care organizations, administrators and physicians need a sophisticated set of management skills to be successful. This course focuses on those skills: the “how to’s” of successfully managing people and their work.

Return on investment:

•Discuss the challenges of the physician leader role as a manager of people.

•Describe the accountabilities and roles of the physician leader in anorganization.

•Outline the key components and requirements of the human resource development cycle.

•Design and apply best-practice techniques to optimize effectiveness in the human resource development cycle (i.e., behavioural interview, constructive performance conversation).

Register here.
Pay here.

Course presenters: Mary Yates & Jamie Campbell

Social Systems Leadership

Date: Sept. 13 -14, 2019
Location: Regina (Location to be determined)

Course description:

Physicians (and many other healthcare workers) act as experts – not only because of their training, but also because the structure and culture of the health system force them into that expert role. As a result, experts can struggle to lead in the volatility, uncertainty and ambiguity of a complex system such as the Canadian healthcare system.
This course helps with the understanding and practice of systems thinking in an interactive way and makes large complex systems more understandable to live in and influence. Systems thinking will come alive through exercises, learning through a simulated organization and working on a case action plan.

Return on investment:

• Examine and discuss the complexity of the Canadian system for health and disease care.

• Develop and apply skills in sense-making to guide decisions in complicated, complex and chaotic systems.

• Determine and discuss what leadership agility skills are needed in different systems.

• Recognize and influence underlying archetypes and social systems patterns causing resistance to systemic changes.

Register here.
Pay here.

Course presenters: John Van Aerde & Phil Cady

Leading with Emotional Intelligence 

Date: Oct. 25-26, 2019
Location: Saskatoon – SMA Offices

Course description:

Emotional intelligence (EI) is considered a critical healthcare leadership competency, where it been demonstrated to impact effectiveness in all clinical settings—from the boardroom and chairperson's office to the ward and bedside. EI can be defined as the ability to identify, express and manage both your own emotions and others, in order to motivate, cope with stress, and help make good decisions. EI has been shown to impact the quality of care, communication, stress / burnout. This course is targeted for all physicians, regardless where they are along their career trajectory since emotional skills are always relevant. The course will utilize an indepth assessment that will highlight emotional strengths and derailers.

Return on investment:

•Learn the research that underpins emotional intelligence and leadership.

•Assess emotional intelligence along 15 sub-scales and assess the impact on your leadership.

•Acquire and practice skills to enhance emotional intelligence.

•Motivate and promote emotional intelligence in others.

•Leverage your emotional intelligence strengths and address areas for development.

This course provides an emotional intelligence assessment tool MHS Bar-On Leadership EQ-i™ Report, which you will have completed before the workshop.

Register here.
Pay here.