Speaking with Anisa Telwar Kaicker, one thing is immediately evident: she’s not comfortable with complacency. As Founder and CEO of Anisa International she has faced the challenges of both a growing business and an evolving leadership position.
“I was always President of my company. It was many years later when I felt the comfort and confidence to transition to CEO,” she explained. But that wasn’t a transition made lightly—Kaicker worked with coaches and mentors to align with the role of a CEO. And she sees herself as more than that. “I’m a Visionary, Brand Ambassador, Chief Executive and Strategist for the overall business.” That’s a lot of hats.
In today’s highly competitive and ever evolving marketplace, where anything can change in an instant, most CEOs have to wear a lot of hats in order to maintain alignment and keep things going. That’s especially true for expanding startups, which become less agile as they grow, and Anisa International is no exception.
“Coming from an entrepreneurial startup, there was a time when we were lean and could pivot on a dime. That has changed. Yet, sometimes I still think we are that startup and forget that our processes take time to change. Imparting the vision takes time to get buy-ins,” Kaicker said. The solution to these challenges—and indeed most of her leadership challenges—has been a refreshing level of self-awareness. “I move faster than most around me and need to allow them the time to keep up.”