Emerging Leader - Kim Ballard
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VHMA Emerging Leader

Kim Ballard,
Practice Manager,
North Ogden Animal Hospital and Burch Creek Animal Hospital
Bountiful, UT

Managing a clinic with multiple owners and varied preferences for financial, marketing and human resource management has been a true professional challenge. Merging management has brought opportunities to create a new management structure, train and delegate to facilitate professional team growth, and make strategic plans for each clinic based on its strengths, weaknesses and opportunities.

For this veterinary management conglomerate to work as envisioned by my employer, it was necessary to delegate, define a chain of command, and create new roles where needed. At first, I felt burdened and confused. How was I going to manage six owners, four associates, and up to 40 support staff? I met with the team leaders individually and ascertained their strengths, delegated responsibilities accordingly and made changes.

While dividing my time between two groups of staff members, I had to be consistent and trustworthy. Within the teams, each staff member has a different background, training level, and desired growth rate. I knew each would have something important to tell me if only I asked. So ask I did. I met with the teams and got to know each individual as a person and employee.

Both clinics were functioning well before I came. I was entrusted to foster a higher level of stability, productivity and growth. To accomplish this, I evaluated each clinic separately. Using sound management principles, my goal was to allow each practice to shine individually, by capitalizing on strengths and minimizing weaknesses. Together with an empowered team, I continue working at the greatest challenge of my professional career.

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