Medical training in the UK provides limited exposure to formal training in leadership and management, and yet the role of a consultant or general practitioner requires such skills which deal with commissioning arrangements, service transformation, quality improvement, Care Quality Commission visits, complaints and supervision of junior colleagues. A number of clinical fellowships in leadership now exist to bridge this gap, and provide training in leadership and management, together with experiential learning in a complex organisation. Well-established leadership schemes suited to junior doctors include the National Medical Director's Clinical Fellow Scheme, the Royal College of Physicians' chief registrar scheme, the Darzi Fellowship scheme and local schemes run by Health Education England. Here we describe and compare our experience of these schemes, and outline what junior doctors should consider when applying for a clinical fellowship. © Royal College of Physicians 2019. All rights reserved.