Vicky Morrell | Middlesex University London
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Vicky Morrell

Vicky MorrellBranch Manager, Halifax

Advanced Diploma, Retail Banking Practice, 2014

Tell us about what you do as Branch Manager at Halifax.

As a Branch Manager in Halifax bank I lead my team to be the best bank in our community giving customers extra through great service.

What is particularly challenging about your role, and what do you find most fulfilling about it?

I love to see the relationships my branch builds with local customers often seeing generations of families through the most important times of their lives. It is extremely rewarding to see a customer who has been saving to buy their home, open up accounts for their new family or go out with a ‘weight lifted from their shoulders’, having saved some money.

It can be a challenging career with lots of priorities and risks to balance at a fast pace but the focus on colleagues means I know support is on hand and enjoy being part of a very positive team.

What made you choose to study Retail Banking Practice at Middlesex?

I made the decision to go straight into work after college, so although I was pleased with the work I have done to pursue a career in banking I had missed the experience of university level learning. The opportunity to study retail banking practice at Middlesex offered me the challenge of stretching myself and reflecting both personally and professionally.

What aspects of the course did you find particularly beneficial and what did you enjoy the most?

It was easy to get lost in the wealth of interesting research subjects available when I began to look outside of my usual parameters.

Was the course useful in terms of helping you to understand better your own working practices?

The course gave me the opportunity to thoroughly research my business and community to really understand my thought process in producing a meaningful business plan. I would not have had the skill or resources to do this before the course.

How has the opportunity to reflect on your practice affected your work and can you give a concrete example?

On completing the course I understood my own learning style and had an increased awareness of the "bigger picture" in which my business could influence and be impacted. This allowed me to tailor how I manage my branch to be more approachable to our customers and aware of our part in the community.

How do you feel the programme has enhanced your current role?

I have not stopped this research, ensuring I regularly check news updates and seek further information of how new events and wider changes could affect my branch and colleagues. I can then use this to shape my business plan or make recommendations for changes.

Would you recommend a similar programme to others within the industry and if so why?

I would certainly recommend the course as it gives you the time to consider, reflect and stretch your skills which can be used both in and out of work.

What one piece of advice would you give to prospective students looking to study at Middlesex?

My advice would be make the time, don't rush to complete the work or focus on something we already talk a lot about as a company. Choose a subject you are interested in or passionate about.

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