Getting Ahead

This VP Successfully Led Her Team Through the Pandemic—Here’s How

person with short hair standing in front of a tree
Breck Muller, the Vice President of Clinical Services at Ideal Image MedSpa.
| Courtesy of Ideal Image MedSpa

Some former athletes are inspired to become coaches—but not Breck Muller. Her love for sports made her want to pursue a career in medicine. “I wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon so I could help athletes recover and get back to the game they love,” she says.

And while she did follow her passion, it took her down a slightly different path. “I shadowed a surgeon for multiple summers, and he mentioned that I should investigate becoming a physician assistant,” Muller says. “After looking into it, I felt like it was a great fit for me. During PA school, I rotated with two amazing cosmetic surgeons and instantly fell in love with aesthetics in general.”

Today, Muller is a certified physician assistant and the Vice President of Clinical Services at Ideal Image MedSpa, a provider of aesthetic medicine. (She also has a master’s in health administration.)

Here, she talks about what makes her job so fulfilling, how Ideal Image promotes growth from within, and the challenges she faced (and overcame) during the pandemic.

What are you responsible for in your role?

My team and I are responsible for hiring, training, and retaining top medical professional talent. We oversee all medical operations in the clinics from charting to treatment optimization and follow-up care. We are also heavily involved in operations such as inventory, treatment utilization, scheduling, and overall client satisfaction.

You’ve been promoted four times in your almost nine-year tenure at Ideal Image MedSpa. How does this exemplify how the company supports employee growth?

Ideal Image provides many avenues for growth for medical professionals. However, we not only offer growth in the medical sector, but also across the company. We have had many medical pros become sales consultants, managers, or trainers at the home office. We want our associates to love what they do and know that there are many other opportunities available to them if they desire. I believe that building a bench and promoting from within is one of the best ways to grow a company as a whole.

What is the biggest challenge you have faced recently at work and how did you overcome it?

Dealing with the impacts of a global pandemic was personally and professionally challenging for me. Closing and reopening more than 130 clinics was the single most difficult time in my professional career. I had so many feelings that it was difficult to concentrate, and I dealt with many emotions during that time: fear, anger, guilt, anxiety, and depression. As a leader, you must continue to persevere and see the light at the end of the tunnel. We worked harder than ever to ensure that we were providing a safe and secure place for our clients and employees to return to. When our first set of clinics reopened, it was such a relief and I remember being so grateful to be a part of a company that could accomplish so much with our backs against the wall.

Tell us about your experience being a member of the LGBTQ community as an employee of Ideal Image MedSpa. How does the company support an inclusive and diverse environment?

I have felt completely supported in every way at Ideal Image. I honestly feel like I have been treated exactly the same as any other employee—no favoritism, no prejudice. To me, that is the definition of equality.

What makes the work you do so fulfilling?

Our focus is to make our clients look and feel their best. It warms my heart to see the smiles on our clients’ faces after their treatments and know that we have truly impacted their self-esteem. I will never forget the first client that came in for her second treatment with me and she was crying tears of joy because she hadn’t had to shave her face in weeks. In that moment, I fully understood what our services could do for the quality of life of our clients.

What advice do you have for someone hoping to pursue a similar career path?

Build relationships with people you work with. A strong team can do so much more than the individual parts, so you should surround yourself with the most intelligent and hard-working people you can find.