Thoughts On Business Leadership – Lexi Miles

Small business Canada

Beauty entrepreneur Lexi Miles launched the #1 waxbar in Toronto, WAXON Waxbar in 2012 at the age of 26. Over the past four years, Miles has grown the WAXON brand exponentially, now independently producing her own product line and operating 10+ locations in Toronto, Burlington, Oakville, London and Halifax.

Lexi Miles began her career as a management consultant. Miles frequently traveled cross-border and recognized a void in the Canadian waxing market, inspiring her foray into beauty entrepreneurship. With her business background, Miles created a waxbar concept to meet the need for a high end, trendy environment with professional, experienced aestheticians and competitive prices for busy men and women on the go. Miles currently lives in Toronto and continues to manage all aspects of WAXON Waxbar, from branding and new locations to product launches and customer care to maintain a consistent level of top tier service.

What is your definition of Leadership?

My definition of leadership is fostering a culture of growth​ that is driven by passion while staying true to your own voice and vision. Culture has always been at the heart of what I do​, so it’s important for me to provide a business where my team wants to come to work, feel respected, appreciated and have their voices heard. I’m really proud of both the work culture we’ve created for our WAXON and South team and the high-quality, affordable service and products we provide to our WAXON and South clients.

What are the most important values and ethics you demonstrate as a leader?

​The values and ethics that are essential to me as a leader are a loyalty and empathy – my team means absolutely everything to me and I definitely wouldn’t be where I am without them! We have 120+ incredible women who work extremely hard – whether it be on the front-line performing services and greeting clients, or supporting our franchise partners and marketing our business, and I’m grateful for them every day. We work as a family, so there needs to be trust and empathy on both sides for the business to run smoothly. As a leader, you need to be there to fully support your team and understand their needs to create growth and drive results. I can confidently say I am my team’s #1 fan and cheerleader!

How do you encourage the development of your employees?

​I always challenge my employees to take on tasks outside of their regular roles to foster development, because you can’t sustain growth from the limitations of your comfort zone. We have many successful growth stories that include our VP of Operations, who started as the Manager of our very first WAXON location. I also encourage my team to actively make mistakes and learn from them – I think that’s essential for any personal or professional development and allows you to really hone your skillset.

What is your advice to Canadian business owners during the COVID-19 Pandemic? ​

It’s a really tough time for Canadian businesses right now, so it’s important to stay positive and focus on what comes next. Of course, the health, safety, and happiness of our team, clients, and community is our first priority, so we’ve had to make some hard decisions that have been really challenging for me as a leader. My advice for other business owners is to take this time as an opportunity to reassess your business strategies and get creative with solutions, sales, and engagement with clients and your employees. For us, it is imperative to maintain the culture that we have worked so hard to build over the years. It is critical to stay in close contact with our employees, our team and our clients in order to keep the culture intact. It’s a scary time for everyone, so the more you communicate with your people, the more confidence they have in the business and you as a leader and hopefully the easier it will be to bounce back after this is all said and done. Sometimes a tough situation can provide valuable insights and perspectives to make your business stronger and more agile, and I know we will prevail together!​​

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