Spotlight interview

Pete Jennings
Business Governance Executive

Pete Jennings has been part of the ICCI family for nearly 19 years. Having previously worked as our Claims team leader, Pete is now our Business Governance Executive and is CII Diploma qualified. As part of his role, Pete enjoys interacting with the team across many areas of the company and building relationships with people, both inside and outside of the business. He is passionate about ‘doing the right thing’ and always aims to provide excellent customer service.

We spoke to Pete to find out more about his career and industry insight:

Tell us about your career at ICCI and some of the highlights of your career?

I spent some time off-Island before applying for a role as a motor claim handler at Insurance Corporation. At that point, I really wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I quickly settled into the role and realised that it offered fantastic opportunities. I relished the diversity of the role and commenced studies in professional qualifications, achieving first my Certificate and then my Diploma in Insurance, within a few years of starting, which was a real achievement for me.

I have been involved in resolving many claims over the years, which have varied in size and complexity and this has given me a great sense of satisfaction, knowing that I have been able to assist people in their time of need. When I look back, I see my progression within the company as my main highlight, having worked my way from a trainee claims handler to a member of the management team – something I would never have foreseen, but that I am extremely proud of.

How did your role move from the claims team into a governance role and how does it differ?

Having been more involved with projects and audits during the latter stages of my time in claims, the (governance) opportunity arose and seemed to play to my strengths. Although it was a difficult decision to leave my team, I realised that it offered me a great opportunity to spread my wings, get out of my comfort zone and become more involved in other areas of the business.

You’ve been with ICCI for nearly 19 years, what’s kept you at the company for so long?

Being just 21 years old when I started, it was really important to have a support structure around me. The team and in fact whole company provided me with this from the start and whilst there have been many new faces in my time here; this continues to be the case. It hasn’t been without its challenges though and a lot has changed for me over the years, both in work and out, but it’s the people I work with that make ICCI such a great place to work.

Describe your role to someone outside the company.

Essentially, my role is to manage and oversee our processes and controls to ensure that all areas of the business operate as they should; that all aspects of reporting (both internally and externally) are met; as well as providing support and guidance to our teams, in respect of compliance, governance and data protection issues.

As you know, we consider our teams health & wellbeing a priority. What are your three top tips for maintaining a healthy work life balance?

1) It is vital to have a clear definition between work and home life. This has become more ‘blurred’ recently, not least with covid-19 and working from home, but I believe you need to be able to switch off and differentiate between the two.

2) Don’t be afraid to shout if you are struggling. Talk to someone. Whether that is a work colleague, a family member or friend. It is important that you just don’t bottle things up as that will only make things worse.

3) Regularly spend time doing something you enjoy, whether that be exercising, reading or listening to music. Don’t forget how to enjoy yourself and relax.

What are the biggest challenges facing insurers currently and how does your role play into this?

Like most industries, governance and compliance play a vital role in insurance, not least ensuring that we all do the right things. This will continue to be the case, but trying to balance this with the smooth operation of a successful business will be a challenge for many companies.

What is the main advantage of taking out insurance with ICCI?

Most definitely, it is because we are local. In a world where most things can be obtained or done online, it is good to know that you still have the option to speak to someone over the phone or face-to-face if you’d prefer, which, in our close-knit community, is reassuring. Being based in the Islands helps set us apart from our competitors as you can speak to the same person throughout the whole process, plus we have the autonomy to arrange local loss adjusters to be on site almost immediately.

If you were to give anyone advice who was thinking about entering insurance, what would you say?

You never hear any school children saying ‘when I grow up I want to work in insurance’ and it’s certainly not a ‘go to’ career choice for many. I think most of us just fall into the industry, one way or another! I would say though that insurance offers a huge amount: a stable and secure career, with a lot of variety and we (as an industry) should do more to promote ourselves to future generations.

When you are not at the office, what do you like doing?

I mostly enjoy spending time with my family and being out on our boat, travelling between and spending time in the other Channel Islands (particularly Herm) and the Brittany / Normandy regions of France. I also spend a lot of my spare time watching and coaching local junior football.

What’s your favourite sport to watch and which team do you root for and why?

Football has always been my favourite sport, whether that be playing, coaching or simply watching. Newcastle United are my team and, locally, Vale Recreation FC.

What would you do (for a career) if you weren’t doing your role at ICCI?

When I was younger I really wanted to be a pilot or a vet, but I also love coaching and teaching the younger generation, so perhaps I could have turned that into an alternative career choice.

What’s on your bucket list that you haven’t had a chance to complete yet?

I would love to just sail off around the world, visiting remote islands and atolls, particular in the Pacific Ocean. The thought of being so isolated, away from everything and ‘off the grid’ really appeals to me.

What’s something most people don’t know about you?

I went to school with Kimberley Walsh (from Girls Aloud) – although she probably wouldn’t remember me!