Salary for a PhD in Organizational Leadership

Although not always required to obtain a job, a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Organizational Leadership program may help students acquire the skills they need to pursue advanced opportunities and salaries in business, education, organizational development and other fields.

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Salary Potential for Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership Graduates

In May 2014, training and development managers earned mean annual wages of $111,030 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). At that same time, the highest-paying states for this occupation included New York, New Jersey, the District of Columbia, California, and Massachusetts.

As of May 2014, postsecondary business teachers, such as those who provided instruction in human resources and labor relations, received mean yearly salaries of $88,740 as reported by the BLS. Top-paying states included Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, North Dakota, Kentucky.

According to as of January 2016, organizational development managers earned a median salary of $84,199. Most professionals in this position earned between $58,706 and $127,992 as a base salary at that time.

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  • Human Resources Development
  • Labor and Industrial Relations
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Overview of Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership Programs

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Organizational Leadership programs are available at many universities, both on campus and online. Although admission requirements and prerequisites can vary, candidates must typically have at least a bachelor's degree. They may also have to submit their Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, a resume and a summary of their leadership activities or positions. Additional requirements can include letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose and proof of writing ability, such as a research thesis.


In general, Ph.D. programs require 60-72 credits to complete and culminate in a dissertation and an exam. To fulfill the core curriculum requirements, students might pursue topics in organizational behavior and change, qualitative and quantitative research, ethics or statistics. Some programs may allow for internships or concentrations in business, ecclesial, nonprofit or educational leadership, among other specialties.

Career Options

Qualified graduates with a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership may pursue careers in fields where a strong understanding of leadership principles is appreciated. These fields might include business administration, consulting or labor relations. Other graduates may find opportunities in diversity management, human resources or non-profit administration.

Additional options include postsecondary education, which gives students the chance to teach at the college and university level. Per the BLS, consulting, management and scientific services may be especially lucrative for training and development managers.

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