Why study Practice Management?

Making the decision to pursue further studies can be overwhelming. What course? Do I have enough time in the week with work and family commitments? Am I too rusty to learn? Will the benefits outweigh the costs?

I was a specialist practice manager for more than twenty years, but the multi-faceted demands of leadership led me to the realisation that my skillset needed a tune-up. I needed to future-proof myself and the practice, particularly in the areas of compliance, HR and finance. Today I am a proud graduate of UNE Partnerships, and I apply my new skills on a daily basis.

I lead a team of fifteen and we support nineteen specialists. I love the diversity of my workplace. It is multigenerational – shiny newbies in search of a profession, double-degree university students earning while they are learning, workers at the twilight stage of their career, and plenty in-between. Two have approached me eager to study. Joan and Kelsey.

Joan has been our practice manager for two decades and has been pivotal to the growth of the organisation. In her mid-fifties, Joan has put her husband and two sons through university, but it was time to do something for herself. Joan’s motivation to study was simply for the sense of personal achievement. A qualification that belongs to her. Kelsey, at twenty-three, has decided to carve a career in practice management and wants the credentials to get her there. Two very good reasons. As a group, we approached UNE Partnerships and Joan and Kelsey have commenced the brand new Diploma of Leadership in Healthcare Practice. I am a little bit jealous, this course is excellent, interactive, multi-modal and user-friendly.

We have a study session every Thursday night with Colleen Sullivan and Gary Smith in the background reminding Joan and Kelsey to read the questions, not to overthink things and enjoy the journey. They are working their way through the first module on emotional intelligence and are already viewing practice life through new eyes. Joan will tell you that you can indeed teach an old dog new tricks, and Kelsey is starting her career as a life-long learner. I am proud of them both.

Sorry Colleen, but they don’t always read the question and definitely overthink everything, but Joan and Kelsey are learning how to learn, can tell you what the amygdala is, and the enjoyment is contagious! I am already looking forward to their graduation day and the confidence, knowledge and skill that accompanies academic endeavour.

Karen Campbell
Practice Manager
Brisbane Clinical Neuroscience Centre

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