People of Beam Suntory: Allen Guess

people of beam suntory allen guess

People of Beam Suntory: Allen Guess

"One of the biggest misconceptions about enlisting in the Army is that you can only develop a limited set of skills. Personally, I’ve developed many skills that are transferrable for many industries, mostly because in the military there is never a break. You’re always preparing for a new training event or mission. After I accomplished something, I was always moving on to the next. This approach really helped me develop my leadership and communication skills because being in tough and complex situations where success was the only option, always brought the best out of me.

In 2008, I decided to enlist in the Kentucky National Guard. I had several friends return from Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) 1&2 and it made me consider enlisting. I felt as though this was the war of my generation and I wanted to do my part and help those who couldn’t necessarily help themselves. I am now going on almost 14 years in the National Guard.

When I completed my Basic Officer Leader Course, I went to Camp Atterbury to prepare for a mission to Iraq. Later on, I started working as a chemical officer, managing hazardous materials. This led me to my current path of health and safety.

As the health and safety manager for global manufacturing, my job involves implementing new policies and procedures to help operations run smoother, ensure we are in compliance and that employees are safe. To do that effectively, I tap into those skills I’ve developed in the National Guard. I practice a listening first strategy to understand the root of any resistance I may encounter. This way, we’re able to recognize our common goals and keep everyone safe.

Being in the Army helped mold me into the person that I am today. I don't think I would be able to have a leadership role without it. I developed skills that allow me to motivate and connect with people in order to accomplish a goal."

Maj. Allen Guess—Health & Safety Manager, Global Manufacturing, USA 

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