With the evolution of health care delivery systems, laboratories are being viewed as cost centers, and their value is being continually challenged. This requires pathologists to be adequately trained as leaders and managers. New training curricula for pathology residents have been developed, including combined didactic and mentor-based training. At the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, the combination of a large academic pathology department with a wholly owned commercial laboratory has allowed the development of a comprehensive 1-month didactic management course for senior residents. This course is designed to develop a broad-based foundation in laboratory management principles. The reinforcement of many of these principles, however, requires additional hands-on effort. We describe our first experience with this 1-month, theory based-teaching followed by a 3-month "real-world" experience based on a one-on-one mentor relationship between the director of laboratories and a senior resident, who assumed the role of the assistant director of laboratories.