Kaisa Miettinen‘s opinion was strengthened by her relentless hunger for knowledge, continuous eureka moments and learning experiences, and willingness to develop lash experts’ working methods: she could build a company that could become a new pioneer in the field of lash extensions.
When Kaisa Miettinen saw the lash extensions of a friend who had arrived for a visit from Helsinki to Joensuu, she was sold. She wanted similar ones, but that wasn’t enough. She wanted to learn how to make lashes herself. It was necessary, too, as in 2009, there were no lash extension specialists in Joensuu. It felt like a mind-blowing idea straight away.
This reunion led into a whole series of cracking ideas, as a result of which the eyelash extension sector in Finland is no longer as it used to be. Thanks are due to Miettinen and LashLovers – the leading domestic lash extension brand in Finland.
I THINK WE NEED SOMEONE TO LEAD THE WAY
Kaisa Miettinen made a bold career move: having previously worked at an advertising agency, she decided to experiment with entrepreneurship and, inspired by lash extensions, she took on training in the lash sector. Soon Miettinen was in the process of setting up her own lash studio in Joensuu.
Her mind thirsting for knowledge, she wanted to know more and more about the lengthening of eyelashes, and kept on Googling for information about everything related to the field. When more lash experts began to appear in the region, Miettinen noticed a major problem in the field. Or more like a bunch of problems.
– I got customers that needed fixing. For example, too much glue had clearly been used. It was a shame, because it would have been easy to avoid mistakes with in-depth training. Nobody does a bad job on purpose.
Symbolically speaking, the whole palette was spread out. Information was fragmented, if not wrong. The competence of professionals in the field and the quality of products varied. Moreover, the equipment was clumsy to use. The sector needed someone to take the lead, and Miettinen knew she was the right woman for the job. This was a mind-blowing moment: a vision about LashLovers was born, ready to make improvements in the field.
A BRILLIANT TEAM GIVES YOU SUPPORT AND MAKES YOU WORK EFFICIENTLY
The groundbreaking lash business took over this ambitious woman’s life. Kaisa Miettinen made lashes, built an online shop, planned training and products, and educated and guided other operators in the field. But you don’t have to manage everything alone – and it’s not even possible. This is what Miettinen had to admit one night, when she was crying on the floor of her lash studio while packing the orders of her online shop into cardboard boxes after a long day with the customers.
– That’s when she had a mind-blowing idea. There were not enough hours in the day.
Hiring assistants was worth it. This allowed Miettinen to free up resources for comprehensive business development and for taking care of her own well-being. At first, Miettinen’s husband helped her, but soon more people had to be hired. Paula Jousmäki, a friend who had helped Miettinen since the beginning of LashLovers, joined the team, followed by a group of other people for different tasks.
Now Miettinen is surrounded by team of ten, which has enabled the business to grow to its current level. At the same time, Miettinen has made new friends: the LashLovers family has become an important part of the business woman’s life.
– In our company, everyone has an important role to play. In addition, we have an unbelievably great time together. My team is indispensable – or actually, downright mind-blowing!
STRIVE TO CONTINUALLY IMPROVE
When Kaisa Miettinen set off to expand LashLovers’ operations, she put wind in her sails at the Business Joensuu business accelerator. Through the sparring, tips and contacts provided by experts, it became clear to Miettinen that continuous product development was one of the greatest strengths of LashLovers, which had already made a small breakthrough in the field. In other words, it was worth investing in it, especially as there still seemed to be ‘shortcomings’ in the sector.
For example, there were no proper cleaning products for lash extensions. This was a mind-blowing moment for Miettinen. This resulted in the Beauty Wash product, which is sold by hundreds of retailers today and which currently has thousands of satisfied users.
– We have always talked about the importance of cleaning the lashes, but in order to really be heard, we decided to develop our own high-quality cleaning product, which would definitely do its job well.
Miettinen has had several mind-blowing ideas along her journey with LashLovers – after all, the company won the best product development award in the Start Me Up business idea competition in spring 2015. Moreover, the process of questioning her own methods leads to mind-blowing ideas time and time again, as does customer feedback.
– You should not carry out your tasks routinely. Maintaining a business means continuously developing new ideas, learning from mistakes and self-reflection (as well as having mind-blowing ideas).