Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Guardian Girl: The Kelsa-Marie Story

Published:Monday | July 4, 2016 | 7:00 AMSuzzanne Cousins
Kelsa-Marie Pinnock

Driven, adventurous, dedicated, and meticulous, are just a few words that can be closely associated with Guardian Life's newest and youngest executive team member, Kelsa-Marie Pinnock.

Born in Linstead, St Catherine, the 35-year-old executive is vice-president of the Individuals Life Operations at the popular insurance company. "It is a feeling of gratitude and humility to be given the opportunity to serve our internal and external customers at this level," she told Flair.

Age is nothing but a number for this young executive as she is well equipped to carry out her duties in the prestigious position she received on March 1. "I was overwhelmed with emotions - shocked, speechless, and elated all at once," she said after learning of her appointment.

Pinnock, who has experience in project management, computer programming, and business-user support services, has worked for Guardian Life for the last 14 years, where she has given excellent service and dedication in a variety of departments. President of Guardian Life Eric Hosin said, "Kelsa-Marie's rise to the position of vice-president has been noteworthy as she progressed through the ranks of manager, senior manager, assistant vice-president, to vice-president, in just over five years. Among the outstanding qualities that she brings to all her assignments, are her strong organising skills, her drive to deliver on promises, and her resilience of spirit. I am pleased to see how well she has transitioned into her role as vice-president of the Individual Life Operations and as a senior member of the company's leadership team."

 

A WEALTH OF EXPERTISE

 

She has gained qualifications from Microsoft, the University of Technology and the University of New Orleans for programming and application development, computer science and presentation skills. With a wealth of expertise under her belt, she is also happy to say that she has excellent interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to adapt quickly to new situations and technologies. With that, she keeps the following steps at the forefront of her thoughts:

1. Plan purposefully

2. Prepare prayerfully

3. Proceed positively

4. Pursue persistently

Pinnock is ambitious, yet humble. She accredits her achievement with the philosophy of viewing each opportunity as a way to become a better version of herself. "I wish to bloom wherever I am planted," she confessed.

Her advice to other business people: "Demonstrate that, through hard work, self-discipline, and dedication, all things are possible. And in all things, if you won't be deterred by the circumstances, you won't be disappointed by the outcome."

Pinnock grew up with two brothers and so she has never been a girlie girl, but was always more interested in bicycle stunts, learning about cars and exploring nature with her brothers. She was not your stereotypical teenage girl, after leaving Linstead All-Age, Pinnock attended St Hugh's High School, where she was a sports fanatic, playing volleyball, netball, and tennis. As she worked hard in school, like all other youngsters, she had aspirations about what she would be in the future including the dream of being a doctor. "In fifth form, my dad met in a terrible accident and I realised that the sight of blood made me nauseous and that hospitals were scary places," she admitted, and so she changed focus.

 

NEW AVENUE

 

She turned to computer science and information technology as a new avenue to attain her life goal - success. She attributes her motivation to succeed to her father and her faith in God. "My inspiration to succeed was the belief instilled in me by my dad, that I could achieve anything that I wanted, once I put God first, took the time to plan properly, and put in the work required," she said.

"I now benefit from the constant support of excellent mentors who have taken the time to impart their wealth of knowledge and experience on me. I will never be able to truly say thank you enough for the time that they have invested and continue to bestow into coaching and mentoring me," she confessed.

Apart from her secular activities, Pinnock values maintaining a healthy mind, spirit, and body. She told Flair that every morning she does her devotion before heading to the gym. But she still manages to maintain a whimsical routine in the evenings, where she watches cartoons to relax and unwind, before she starts planning for the next busy day that awaits her.

When she is not working to better the lives of customers, she enjoys baking, curling up with a good book or "exploring my beautiful country and going on road trips with my friends in our bid to explore Jamaica".

As the vice-president and the person in charge of customer satisfaction, Kelsa-Marie Pinnock is currently the youngest executive at Guardian Life, but most certainly is living up to the expectations set before her, to maintain the approval of those with whom she works.