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Krstyle’s got big plans

NATANGA SMITH, [email protected]

Krstyle’s got big plans

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Krystle Smith is busy these days. Juggling demanding work commitments and planning an April wedding isn’t easy but when you have a knack for prioritising what is important, then the rest falls into place.

Krystle is the marketing manager at Digicel Barbados, climbing up the corporate ladder from a junior position. Born and raised in Jamaica, Krystle’s mum was a teacher (dad owns an advertising and media agency) so “education came first”.

“Sports participation was also a must, so I did netball, swimming and tracks all the way to high school . . . . I also played piano for a little as well [as] doing some dancing.”

Krystle’s career plans started with law, but she always had a passion for marketing, helping her dad in his business.

“I did my bachelor of arts at the University of the West Indies and obtained a project management certificate from Boston University. Over the years, I worked with a few agencies and production houses, but it was after I started with Digicel that I decided I was going to make this my career.”

Her journey at Digicel started nine years ago, being a marketing executive for four years. Five years ago she moved to Barbados and a year later was promoted to senior marketing executive, a role she held for three years. She was then promoted to marketing communications manager and one year later promoted to her current role of marketing manager.

“My move to Barbados was primarily a professional one, as it provided the regional experience I wanted to achieve in markets outside of Jamaica. So when the opportunity was presented I decide to move.

“During my studies I interacted with students from all over the world including Israel, Belgium, and so on, so I have been exposed to different ideas and ways of thinking which have been hugely beneficial from a commercial standpoint.”

No two days are the same at work”, stated Krystle.

“The ups and downs of the business is that telecommunications in and of itself is a very fast-paced and dynamic industry. Technology is changing every day with the world becoming more and more data-centric.  So we are always focussed on bringing our customers the latest innovation to keep them connected whether in their businesses or in their personal lives.”

Krystle said being a female manager in the tech field has its challenges.

“As women, we all have varying circumstances to deal with. However, I believe with the right balance, support and faith in ourselves we can achieve anything we want to and more. I’ve been able to climb the ladder from being a very junior member of staff at Digicel to now a manager – so while every day will come with its challenges, I am happy that current environment that I’m working in supports my ambition and drive to climb the ladder even further.”

But Krystle knows perseverance, teamwork and a healthy work/life balance is also key.

“I am constantly on the go professionally, but all work and no play is not my motto,” she said, laughing. “At the moment, I have a few big things on my plate, including finalising budgets for the start of a new financial year, final stages of completing my thesis for a master’s degree from Durham University in Britain, plus my wedding. But I have a great team that supports me at work while my family and my fiancé’ Daine Hinds (attorney at law) keeps me balanced.”

Krstle is always challenging herself and setting new goals and when asked what was her biggest life challenge so far she replied: “Every day has been a challenge that I’ve overcome. So, when I meet my biggest life challenge, I’ll let you know. But in my personal life I am still coping with the loss of my grandma who died two years ago suddenly. We were very close.”

Krystle said on her journey she always keeps a quote close to heart from her grandma.

“She told me: ‘If your dreams don’t scare you they aren’t big enough’. And I like to dream big.”