After working in finance for 10 years, Marissa Anden moved to Kansas City and made the decision to switch career paths. “I didn’t know many people outside of my office, but I saw this huge group of like-minded women at Central Exchange,” she shares. “I said, this is my opportunity to meet people and continue my self-development process.” Today, Marissa is focused on opening a Nekter Juice Bar in Overland Park, KS, with the encouragement of her fellow Central Exchange members. Meet Marissa.

Her path to CX:

As a transplant to Kansas City, Marissa didn’t know anyone outside of her office. When her previous company sponsored the 2018 Central Exchange Leadership Lyceum, a daylong personal and professional development event, Marissa discovered a vast network of talented women. At the time, Marissa was still in finance, but she knew that wasn’t what she wanted to do any longer. She says, “In the spirit of taking a big leap and being successful, I decided to become a member. I just felt like the women of the Central Exchange, understanding what they’re about, would give me an automatic network of women and a rolodex that I wouldn’t get anywhere else.”

Central Exchange’s impact on her career:

Marissa knew she wanted to make a big change in her career, and CX’s network of women, countless events and business development education was just what Marissa needed to chase her dreams. “Being around that group of women is so inspiring and motivating,” she says. “I knew I had a network, I knew I had resources, so I was able to make the transition.” The more involved Marissa became with Central Exchange, the more her knowledge of entrepreneurship and leadership grew. “I try to attend as many programs as I possibly can,” Marissa says. “Central Exchange has given me unlimited resources for my career.”

CX’s impact on her personal life:

After each CX event, Marissa finds herself full of energy and enthusiasm. “My husband knows when I’ve been at Central Exchange that day because I’m in a positive mood!” she explains. “I want to share what I learned . . . it just spills over!” Hearing how excited her fellow CX members are for her juice bar makes her feel exhilarated and empowered to take the next step. “Honestly, I don’t know what I would do without Central Exchange at this point,” she says. “These women have been so kind to me. It makes me so happy.”

Memorable lesson:

The first Central Exchange class Marissa ever attended was a mindset workshop taught by Lauren Schieffer. Learning about the way we speak to ourselves through negative thoughts and how to change this inner-dialogue was transformational for Marissa. “For me, that was big. I’d just made a big jump. I quit my corporate job to launch a juice bar. Naturally, you’re going to have self-doubt. Lauren helped me build a business affirmation I’ve said to myself over and over and over. It changed me.” These positive tools helped Marissa overcome business challenges and thrive in her personal life.

Favorite Central Exchange program:

As an entrepreneur starting her own business, Marissa’s learned the most from CX’s U.S. Bank CEO Series. “I think to myself, someday I could be that CEO at Central Exchange who they’re interviewing!” Discovering how other CEOs have built their company culture, become great leaders and learned difficult lessons along the way has given Marissa valuable insight into her own business. “What CX does really well is offering a good balance of tangible, tactical skills and the soft skills that are equally important in business. Trusting your gut, being in tune with intuition, affirmation . . . all of these are huge tools.”

Final word:

At Central Exchange, Marissa’s found true friendships and priceless business resources to help her achieve her dreams. She says, “In the short amount of time I’ve been a member of Central Exchange, this organization has had more impact on my personal and professional life than I’ve had in 10 years of professional experience in the finance industry. It’s genuinely impacted all aspects of my life!”

Thanks to Marissa for being a member of Central Exchange, and sharing her enthusiasm and encouragement with every member and guest she meets here. Find support from women like Marissa at Central Exchange. Achieve your full potential! You’re invited to visit. Register for one of our many upcoming programs.

Since 1980, women like Marissa have come to Central Exchange to empower their career — and their life. Meet more of our unparalleled members.