Sun | Apr 23, 2017

Kisha Anderson - Golden Heart

Published:Monday | December 8, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Though small in stature, Anderson has a big heart. - Contributed Photo
Anderson with her always easy smile.
It was a family affair when the Andersons visited Busch Gardens. From left: Kisha, with sons Matthew and Daniel and loving husband Kurt. - Contributed Photo
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Jody-Anne Lawrence, Lifestyle Reporter

Kisha Anderson joined Jamaica Money Market Broker (JMMB) in her youth, and this second family took her on a new path and showed her a future she was not prepared for but loves and has no regrets.

Anderson is the newly appointed country manager for JMMB (Jamaica) and Flair went to the head office to speak to her about her accomplishments. She was small in stature but warm in spirit. We sat at what I assumed was a meeting table in her office which brought us closer - like two friends at lunch.

She told Flair about her experience as a Campion College student - one which she said, is much different from what many experience or even speak about today.

"I do not think then was the same as it is today. It was a great place to meet a lot of people. I cannot remember it being pressuring or intense like some people might refer to it as being today. That was not my impression," stated Anderson.

There were a few teachers that impacted her greatly, but the one that stands out to her most is Radley Reid. His strict but encouraging demeanour was something she truly appreciated.

She faced disappointment when her dream of being a doctor was deferred when she did not get into medical school. However, she was accepted into the University of the West Indies to study natural sciences, with hopes of transferring to Medical School. Anderson's dream took another detour when she received a part-time job at JMMB. There she found that there was something else that she was passionate about. She worked in several capacities - fund administration, relief client relations, express transaction officer, and soon she got caught up in the family, and knew that was the place for her.

As soon as she finished her bachelor in environmental sciences, she was offered the post of relief branch manager. After just three days of training, the branch manager at one of the branches took ill and she was thrown into the position - an experience she describes as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

"It was intimidating, but I tried my best not to appear intimidated. However, I had absolutely no experience in managing people - it was something new and I literally learnt the job," she told Flair. She added that one thing that she was grateful for was the people she was surrounded by - people like Keith Duncan, whom she said was just ready to teach everyone who is willing to learn; Orlene Baxton; Caroline DaCosta and Patricia Sullivan.

Challenges

Nothing is without challenges, and she admits that one's attitude helps in overcoming them. She experienced such a challenge only a week after becoming branch manager when a meeting was called by her colleagues to state their grouses about how the branch was being managed.

"It was a huge blow. I listened and knew that some of the problems that they had were before I had even arrived, and I had to keep telling myself that it was not my fault and it was not personal. You cannot take it personally. But what I forced myself to do was listen. When you listen, and I mean really listen, sometimes you realise the answers to their problems are in their cries. People do not complain for complaining sake," Anderson said.

She admitted that she went home, had a good cry and then regrouped so that she could address their concerns.

Anderson is not all about the work,
though. She has been married to her high-school sweetheart Kurt for 15
years, with two sons - Daniel who is 11, and Matthew who is nine years
old.

Her face lit up as she spoke about her sons, and her pride
is evident. She loves their independence and the fact that they know
what they have to do and do it without being
pushed.

"We had a trip earlier this year to Busch
Gardens and I watched how they were able to do things on their own. They
did their own thing and I admired how they have just come into their
own. I love the fact that they are different - the younger one doesn't
feel the need to be like his older brother. They are great boys." She
admitted that she had joked with her husband saying, "They will soon be
old and gone and I can just be married to only you again." She laughed
and in that moment was consumed by a glow that said she was still in
love.

But with the joy she gets from her job and
family, she gets further fulfilment from giving back - not only in
teaching on the job, but also alongside her husband who serves as a part
of the Moorlands Summer Camp Ministry.

"Sometimes we
are in that parent mode, but it is important that as adults we listen to
our youths. Not only talk, but listen. We always think that we should
be teaching them but they can teach us things too. It's an opportunity
to sow a seed," said Anderson.

She is also a justice
of the peace, and in that capacity, she participates in a family day for
prisoners at the Men's Adult Correctional Centre. This is organised by
Custos of Kingston Steadman Fuller. This venture is something that she
truly appreciates and commends Fuller on. "They have made their mistake
and are serving their time for it, but we get to show the children that
they (the prisoners) still love them even though they cannot be there,"
she said.

Though small in stature, Anderson is
evidently a woman with a big heart. She has one message to other women,
"Don't be afraid to love yourself: by nature we are always caring for
and looking after others; taking time for ourselves is a good thing. It
is only when we are whole - healthy, looking after our spiritual lives - that we can freely give to others."