INDI & Abbott Celebrate Programme Graduates

154FJ6R4211AbbottINDIFront row (L-R) Dan McCarthy, Richelle Flanagan (INDI), Ciara McGowan, Julie Dowsett, Jennifer Feighan (CEO, INDI), Dorothy Loane, Leo Kearns, (National Lead for Transformation & Change, HSE), Amanda Cahir-O'Donnell (INDI/Abbott Leadership Programme Director) & Bindu Nair (Abbott). Back row (L-R) Niamh Fitzpatrick, Barbara Gillman, Teresa Stenson, Siobhan Julian, Lorraine Moran, Anne Marie Bennett, Fiona Burke (Country Manager, Abbott) & Sarah Keogh.

Irish Nutrition & Dietetic Institute (INDI) and Abbott Create World Class Leadership Programme

The INDI & Abbott Certificate in Management and Leadership was established in 2013 by the two organisations who shared a vision. The INDI’s remit is to promote healthy nutrition for all and Abbott aims is to improve access for all patients to optimum nutrition. Against this backdrop and coupled with similar business objectives and a 25 year collaborative partnership, the educational initiative was developed in late 2013 and rolled out in 2014.

The inaugural Graduation Ceremony took place at the INDI AGM & Conference on Saturday 11th October 2014 in the Clyde Court Hotel, Dublin 4. There to present the graduates with their certificates was Leo Kearns, National Lead for Transformation and Change (St Steven’s Hospital) and Richelle Flanagan, outgoing President, INDI.

“As part of the INDI’s 5 year strategic plan we are committed to helping the organisation reach its full potential and ensure its members are given the opportunity to work at senior management level both in the wider healthcare arena and industry. This partnership with Abbott allows us do both and we are very proud of the initiative and equally proud of all the candidates who graduated. Under the expert guidance of Amanda Cahir-O’Donnell, the Dietitians have gained a greater understanding of leadership best practice principles and critically how to apply it to their current roles and environments. Furthermore, with a renewed focus on improving the health of the nation, and identifying how vital proper nutrition is in that process, we are confident The INDI & Abbott Certificate in Management and Leadership will continue to grow over the coming years,” said Jennifer Feighan, CEO, INDI.

The Certificate Programme was developed to build on existing skill sets but also to offer candidates the chance to learn how to manage themselves for success in their career; enhance their ability to lead a team; increase strategic influencing and improve communication and to increase confidence levels as a decision maker within the health sector. Modules were structured to include Process, Knowledge, Outcomes, Skills and how to embody all into learning.

Explaining further background to the initiative is Fiona Burke, Country Manager for Abbott’s nutrition business, “Abbott has partnered with the INDI for more than 25 years and we are extremely proud of and passionate about this partnership. Having provided bespoke leadership development programs for other partners in the health care arena we immediately recognised we had the expertise and experience to support the INDI’s ambition of developing future leaders. When the INDI published their strategy document, we collectively identified this opportunity and the initiative was born. Having worked closely with the INDI, the candidates and Programme Leader over the as part year, we are delighted with the depth of knowledge the graduates have learnt and we look forward to seeing how the new candidates for 2014 enjoy the experience as well.”

Programme Leader, Amanda Cahir-O’Donnell, is a world-class Executive Coach, Leadership and Team Development Consultant with over twenty years’ experience. As Managing Director of TIO Consulting Ltd. (, she has worked with directors, senior leaders and their teams in a wide range of sectors including pharmaceutical, healthcare, financial, energy, government and professional services. Amanda’s pragmatic approach, solution-based focus and goal orientated style ensures candidates apply their new found knowledge to real-world situations that ultimately result in positive change for both the candidate and environment they operate in.

All 15 candidates were INDI members with at least 5 years post-graduate experience and an up to date Continuous Professional Develop (CPD) plan. Each were required to demonstrate their capability to meet challenges quickly, communicate clearly, influence positively, be innovative, creative, flexible and have the ability to lead others. Successful candidates worked in the HSE, research/academia, Industry and as self-employed Dietitians. To give you a flavour of what the programme is like, here is a short video with interviews from the programme’s inaugural delegates:

Further information on the INDI & Abbott Leadership Certificate in Management and Leadership can be found on the INDI and Abbott websites. Applications for 2015 can be downloaded from