3-Apr-2020 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Coaching for return to work – Tools for occupational therapists to empower clients


Friday, April 3, 2020
8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (Pacific Time)

Coaching is a key enablement skill for occupational therapists (Townsend & Polatajko, 2007, 2013) and is an effective tool in facilitating return to work for clients with various diagnoses (e.g., Audhoe et al., 2018; Donker-Cools et al., 2016; Nieuwenhuijsen et al., 2017). This one-day introductory workshop equips you with the knowledge and hands-on skills to utilize a coach-approach with your clients to empower them to improve their occupational performance and to return to work.  You will explore the fundamentals of non-directive coaching, access an International Coach Federation (ICF) core competency coaching framework, and practice coaching skills to apply immediately in your occupational therapy practice. You will receive handouts that include strategic tools to be effective with clients.

A follow-up webinar will be offered to check-in on progress and next steps for your coaching practice as an occupational therapist. You are encouraged to reflect on and bring with you some case studies for the practical exercises.

Preliminary workshop agenda:

8:00-9:00 a.m.

Introduction to coaching in occupational therapy practice

·         What is a coach-approach? How does it differ from other approaches?

·         What is transformative dialogue? 

·         Why use a coach-approach in occupational therapy for return to work?

·         Coaching demonstration

9:00-10:00 a.m.

Introduction of the coach-approach core competencies – a framework

·         How do I use a coach-approach?

·         Step 1-3 of 6: Coach-approach dialogue

·         Coaching skill exercises

10:00-10:15 a.m.

Morning break

10:15 a.m.-11:30 a.m.

Introduction of the coach-approach core competencies – a framework (continued)

·         Step 4-6 of 6: Coach-approach dialogue

·         Coaching skill exercise

11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Lunch (on your own)

12:30-1:15 p.m.

How to have effective coaching conversations with your clients wishing to return to work

·         How do I show up when using a coach-approach?

·         When do I use a coach-approach with my client wishing to return to work?

·         Tools to assist in using coaching

1:15-2:00 p.m.

Learning lab: Practicing how to have effective coaching conversations and discover how to use a coach-approach with your clients wishing to return to work

·         Small group coaching practice (using a coaching tool)

2:00-2:15 p.m.

Afternoon break

2:15-4:00 p.m.

Linking it back to return to work at YOUR work

·         Coaching demonstration (using a participant’s case study)

·         Small group exercise: How to integrate a coach-approach in YOUR work

·         Preparing for the follow-up webinar

Learning objectives:
By the end of this workshop, you will be able to:

  1. Define coaching and its relationship with occupational therapy.
  2. Explain why to use coaching for return to work.
  3. Follow a framework to apply the coaching core competencies in your clinical practice.
  4. Explain how to use coaching with clients wishing to return to work.
  5. Start to incorporate coaching skills in your clinical practice.

Target audience:

Occupational therapists, occupational therapist assistants (OTAs) and students in occupational therapy and OTA/PTA programs who wish to start using coaching with clients to empower them to return to work. Coaching has been demonstrated as helpful in facilitating return to work with people with various diagnostics, including acquired brain injury, cancer, depression, psychosis, stroke, and work-related chronic stress. It can be used in outpatient, rehabilitation centres, private practices, community settings, and workplaces.

Please note: Each participant is responsible to ensure they apply the information within the context of their licensure, provincial/territorial legislations, institution regulations, scope of practice, et

Areas of practice

Vocational rehabilitation, Mental health, Cognitive, Neurological/Neuromuscular, Musculoskeletal, Cardiovascular and respiratory, Digestive/metabolic/endocrine, General physical health

Client age groups 

Adults (20-64 years old)

Workshop level:
Beginner (0-2 years of experience with Coaching)


Hélène Thériault, M AEd, Reg. OT (BC), ACC

Hélène’s 17-year-career as an occupational therapist has taken her to positions all across Canada from New Brunswick to British Columbia working in both the private and public sectors of health care. Hélène combines her occupational therapy practice with a ‘coach approach’ to support her clients return to work. She believes this approach—tool in her toolbox—has helped her be more efficient and effective in the occupational therapy process and is excited to see that more evidence-based research is showing the effectiveness of the ‘coach approach’ in healthcare. She completed a Master of Adult Education at St. Francis Xavier University and recently became an Associate Certified Coach (ACC).  She is a member of the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists as well at the International Coach Federation. Hélène is also a clinical instructor at the University of British Columbia facilitating occupational therapy students’ learning. https://www.functionfirstcoaching.com 

Registration fees:

Regular Online rates: Registration and payment completed between January 9, 2020 and April 1, 2020

CAOT Member and Associates

Student Associates and Retired Members

Non member*




Plus applicable taxes


Registration deadline: March 18, 2020

Please note that for the 2019-2020 workshops, CAOT has reduced the registration fee for all registrants instead of offering a group rate. When available, CAOT offers late registration for workshops at the regular rate plus a $50 administration fee. We will only be able to accommodate if there is sufficient space.

*In many cases it would be more cost effective to become a CAOT Member or Associate rather than pay the non-member rate. See “Can a non-member register for a Workshop?” in our Workshop FAQ to know which membership category you are eligible for. 

Included in your registration fee:

One-day workshop, coaching workbook and resources, electronic copy of presentation slide handouts, coffee/tea/water during mid-morning and mid-afternoon breaks, opportunity to network and make connections with other occupational therapists interested in this topic, one-hour follow-up webinar with the presenter approximately 1 month following the workshop, electronic certificate of attendance

The Workshop registration fee has been reduced by $40 by not including lunch and snacks. Lunch and snacks are to be done on your own.

Save the date:
Q&A Webinar

Maximum number of registrants:  

Cancellation/refund policy:

All cancellation/refund requests must be sent in writing to education@caot.ca. Cancellation requests received due to personal or family medical reasons (doctor’s note required) prior to March 18, 2020 will be given a full refund minus $50.00 administrative fee or after March 18, 2020 will be given a 50% refund. Cancellation requests for any other reason received prior to March 18, 2020 will be given a 50% refund or received after March 18, 2020 will be provided no refund. Substitutions are permitted, subject to a $50.00 administrative fee. 

CAOT reserves the right to modify the workshop title, description, registration dates and information on the workshop webpage. CAOT will notify participants on or before February 21, 2020 if there is insufficient registration by that date and reserves the right to cancel a Workshop due to insufficient registration up until March 6, 2020. CAOT reserves the right to modify the offering, interrupt Workshops, change the timing of a Workshop, cancel a Workshop or change the location of a Workshop due to the presenter no longer being able to present the Workshop, severe weather, power failure, building closures or other special circumstances that are beyond the control of CAOT by notifying participants as soon as possible. If the Workshop is cancelled by CAOT, registrants will receive a full refund of the registration fee. CAOT will not be responsible for other costs or expenses incurred by registrants as a result of any such changes.

Additional questions?
If you would like to inquire on accessibility options available to you, please contact education@caot.ca or 1-800-434-2268 ext. 222.

If you would like to attend this workshop in another location, please complete this brief survey to let us know. Please note that the registration fee may vary from one location to another as there are different costs involved.

We invite you to consult the Workshop FAQ for an immediate response to the most frequent questions we receive regarding Workshops. Please do not hesitate to contact us at education@caot.ca or 1-800-434-2268 ext. 222 should you have additional questions or concerns.

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