Future is bright for Victoria and her Chantry Vets colleagues

Future is bright for Victoria and her Chantry Vets colleagues

With hard work and determination, former veterinary nurse Victoria Lee is excelling in her career as practice manager at Chantry Vets.  Now, she’s looking forward to managing Chantry’s new £1.6million veterinary hospital in Wakefield, and is celebrating her personal goal of achieving a PgCert in Veterinary Business Management from Liverpool University.

As we celebrate Veterinary Nurse Awareness Month, Victoria reveals the support she’s received from VetPartners to develop her thriving career…

THE spring of 2022 has proved to be an exciting time for myself and my colleagues at Chantry Vets.

Our long-held dream of a new veterinary hospital has become a reality with the opening of our state-of-the-art practice in Wakefield after outgrowing our hospital in Alverthorpe.

It is everything we hoped it would be, with new high-tech equipment, including a brand-new CT scanner.    Excellent facilities including 5 consults rooms, an ICU and spacious cat wards have transformed the comfort and care we can provide our patients and has enabled us to deliver improved services to our clients.

The £1.6million investment from VetPartners has created one of the most modern facilities in the North of England, providing 24-hour care and an expansion of our existing services.

As befits such a fantastic facility, we are fortunate to have a team who are highly qualified and skilled, and who really care about our patients.

Being part of VetPartners has enabled many of us to study for further qualifications to enhance our career development.   This support has helped me to study to a higher level and achieve my own personal goals, whilst also benefiting my practice.

The group run many of their own CPD courses and in 2018 I was part of the first cohort to complete the VetPartners Managers’ Programme.  I was then offered the opportunity to complete a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) but the course structure didn’t fit around family life and travelling would have clashed with school drop-offs and an already busy schedule.

Undeterred, and eager to continue my education, I researched and found the PgCert in Veterinary Business Management from Liverpool University.  This course structure was entirely online, forgoing the need to travel. My business development director (BDD) from VetPartners, Pred Prokic, was extremely supportive, even writing a letter of recommendation for me to access the course as I didn’t have the requisite Bachelor’s degree for entry.

I’m very grateful to VetPartners for funding the course and for the investment in my personal development.

The PgCert is Level 7, so a Masters-level course and not for the faint-hearted! The course covers business strategy, HR, finance, marketing, plus intro and work-based modules.  All modules have a strategic focus and are specific for the veterinary industry.

As an RVN I had never studied at that level previously, so it was a steep learning curve. With two small children I had to be very regimented and studied every night once the kids were asleep. It has been an incredibly fulfilling course, however, and I have learned a great deal.  I would highly recommend the course to anyone in a practice manager or clinical director role as it is highly relevant and gives you specific insights into ways to make a real difference within your practice.

The course really helped me to evolve in my role and hopefully my career development reflects how veterinary nurses can develop their careers and make a big impact in the running and management of practices, as well as the wider veterinary industry.

RVNs have such a diverse skill set.  They really have a massive amount of potential to expand their roles and progress within their chosen fields.  There are more opportunities than ever before, especially with the exponential growth of VetPartners.

I started my career as a student nurse in 1997, qualifying as an RVN in 2000 and becoming a qualified nurse assessor three years later.  After working in senior nursing roles, I moved into a managerial role in 2004, completing the Veterinary Practice Administration Certificate in 2008.  I joined Chantry Vets as practice manager in 2010, later gaining certificates in Team Leading and Mental Health Awareness.

My role encompasses all aspects of practice management and business development. I am deeply passionate about providing the best working environment for our team and I’m constantly looking for ways to improve the level of care we provide for our patients.

My background as a nurse helps me to understand the clinical aspects of decision-making within the practice. The PgCert in Veterinary Business Management has helped me add to that knowledge base by understanding underpinning theories in many areas that impact strategic management.

I have always been enthusiastic about ongoing training, and love nothing more than helping others to develop their skills and progress within their careers.  I’m fortunate to work alongside amazing people who share these views, both within our team at Chantry Vets and the wider team at VetPartners.

For media enquiries, please contact Amanda Little, VetPartners PR and Communications Director. Email amanda.little@vetpartners.co.uk