Karen Kessack

Scotland, MBA 2019

“Never, never, never give up” – Samuel 

I was aware of how highly the Kent MBA was ranked and wished that this was a route that I could have taken to help me develop. However, due to a break having children,  I had thought this was a path that was too late for me, and that I would not be able to step away from my career. I was thrilled when the opportunity became available to be supported by my employers, and as I work locally this enables me to have face to face teaching and continue with my busy work role. I am also looking forward to meeting other students which, having previously done some studying via distance learning, is something I realise to be extremely valuable.

I am currently Head of Quality Governance and Professional Standards for East Kent Adult Services. I’m also a Registered Adult Nurse and a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse SCPHN (SN).

I hold a postgraduate certificate in Healthcare Leadership and have had a varied career which has included working for Sky Television as well as for Public Health England and a Clinical Commissioning Group, supporting the development of the clinical and non-clinical workforce in primary care.

I’m passionate about using Twitter to connect, learn and share good practice and has recently been named on a list of most influential social media improvement ‘super connectors’ in the NHS by NHS Horizons. I’m also a fully qualified QSIR teaching faculty associate and part of the Quality Strategy Implementation Group (QSIG) which supports the quality improvement programme throughout the trust.

Achievements

• Qualification as a registered general nurse and subsequent postgraduate specialist qualifications has allowed me to drive projects forward from a nursing view
• Working for Public Health England on the Immunisation Programme, and then as Head of Immunisations for Kent and East Sussex, transforming the team into a service.
• Being part of the introduction of QI methodology for our Organisation and seeing the spread and enthusiasm from our staff in embracing this.

Aspirations

The NHS is a rapidly changing organisation and I hope to develop my skills to enable me to meet the challenges of these changes. I have achieved well in my career so far, but I recognise that I need to step up my knowledge and evidence base to support my next move.

Advice

I am not sure that I am qualified to give advice on how to get on in business! However, I find that hard work, determination, a sound evidence base, and authenticity are things that I value and aspire to. I am also very interested in the importance of kindness in the workplace as a key to improvement.

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