Thu | Dec 8, 2016

Anne Stewart She does it all

Published:Monday | October 13, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Anne Stewart, newly appointed head of LIME's SME Sales.

Cathy Risden, Lifestyle Writer

"A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down easier, especially if you give that medicine with love. I do not listen to hearsay, and always make my own judgement call," Anne Stewart told Flair when asked about her leadership style.

She was welcomed to the LIME business team in July, as head of small and medium-size enterprise market (SME) telecommunication. With more than 15 years of experience and knowledge in sales, her reputation of solid sales performance coupled with great customer service were well-developed.

Anne Stewart describes herself as energetic, passionate and focused on whatever endeavour she is pursuing. This is evident in her business objectives, which include driving new business revenues, improving customer satisfaction, and increasing sales in the SME portfolio.

Stewart is always up for a challenge. She notes that having someone to emulate is very important in helping individuals to follow their dreams. "I have had a few role models in my life, especially in my formative years. Yvette Smith, former vice-principal of St Andrew High School and St Hugh's and former vice-president of the Jamaica Netball Association, as well as Mavis Brent-Harris from Mutual Security Bank, played a pivotal role in my life. Hats off to those women

who have helped to shape me into the woman I am today."

Leadership Style

Stewart said that she is very easygoing and inclusive: "I enjoy bringing out the best in people, and usually they feel very comfortable talking to me about all aspects of work, and even personal matters. I don't harbour a grudge, and I am very outspoken."

She revealed that she is also very competitive. "I think this is so because I grew up as a tomboy because of my close association with my brother." Her competitiveness is also a result of her involvement in sports: "As long as I am doing something, I really strive to do it well, and my competitive nature is because of my sporting background." Stewart represented Jamaica in netball and basketball and has already made a valuable contribution to LIME's Business House netball team.

No Pressure

"Pressure is the order of the day. One has to deliver on objectives and targets. It's about playing your most important game and making less mistakes than your opponents," she said.

Although Stewart has more of a democratic leadership style, a mixture will give a better result. "I find that a combination for me really gets the best results. I do not work well with the autocratic manager. I like a combination - [they] can be consultative, persuasive and democratic," she concluded.

Balancing it all

A woman of many hats, she still finds time to play her roles as a mother, wife, manager and team player. "My job is very demanding as I have a team of over 10 persons that report to me. However, great time management and focus helps to balance work and my personal life. My daughters are both in college (University of the West Indies and University of Technology) and my husband and I have been around for the past 30 years, so we have a fairly good grip on how to make it work," she explains.

In all that she does, she tries to remain positive and self-motivated, even through criticism, "Well, criticism and complaints, for me, is an indication of my self-evaluation and my woman-in-the-mirror moment. I am always open to discuss issues and criticism. People are entitled to their opinions - it is just how you handle it. It can be viewed as constructive and one can agree to disagree with it."

Always room for improvement

But Stewart always find ways of improving herself. "Mentorship from persons regarded as connoisseurs. Just being around persons in the industry, one can learn so much," said Stewart.

It took hard work and dedication to get where she is today, and Stewart encourages other women who fail to believe that they can be successful in whatever position they desire. "Women just have to continuously strive to break the'glass ceiling. It will happen when women continue to give their best by their passionate devotion via their skills. It is still apparent that the Old Boy Network is very strong, but a confident, no-nonsense woman who is guided by certain principles will find her way to the top," she concluded.

Play time

Being active is a way to stay in shape and Stewart knows how to have fun. "I love dancing and enjoy a good soca party. I do not drink or smoke, and I do believe in living life to the fullest with minimum regrets. I also enjoy hanging out with my girls, who keep me current."

cathy.risden@gleanerjm.com