JP Ellis

JP Ellis Company: Constantia Insurance Brokers
Position: Senior Manager: Legal and Claims

  1. Why did you choose to enter The Insurance Apprentice? I entered the competition because it is one of the few initiatives that makes a real impact on me and, more generally, on the industry – in terms of succession planning.
  2. In your mind, what qualities should an ambassador of The Insurance Apprentice have? Undoubtedly a high level of professionalism. Naturally leadership abilities and good communication skills. More importantly, a genuine desire to be better than the day before.
  3. Did you choose a career in insurance or did you fall into the industry like so many others? Since the first day of my articles, as a candidate attorney, I was representing insurance companies, underwriting managers and brokerages and providing them with legal services. My principal was well known and respected in the industry and he groomed and mentored me into a specialist insurance lawyer. My career progressed and I was poached by Clyde and Co, the leading specialist insurance law firm in South Africa (and globally). I joined Constantia in 2017 to head up the claims and legal department for their new PI division, EthiQal, after the CEO made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. I’ve enjoyed my experience and have come to love this industry even more.
  4. How important is winning for you? It is highly important. Winning the competition will be my first real accomplishment in the insurance industry. That would mean more to me than the other accomplishments I have had in the legal profession. The experience of competing and winning will be more rewarding, I think. The trip to Lloyds is simply the icing on the cake.
  5. A message to all the TIA sponsors? I have so much appreciation to every sponsor for the platform they have given to FAnews and the support they have given to the contestants. Not only for the competition itself but also for the production of the show. These initiatives aren’t easy to manage. While monetary sponsorship is the lifeblood of the production it is also dependant on the resources they provide, like venues, human resources, etc.
  6. Advice to yourself about what you should remember and focus on as you are going into the competition. I have to keep in mind that every other contestant has unique skills and experience which make them eligible to win. I must not be delusional in thinking the competition can be won purely by motivation. I have to do the basics right and play to my strengths. I must win as many tasks as possible by encouraging my team to work together and leveraging off their skills. This is the only way I can influence the outcome of the competition.