This small biz is taking relaxation to another level

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Wood Lane Beverages was founded in 2016 by Lexie Stewart because she wanted to create a premium drink that was both healthy and delicious. Wood Lane’s beverages are natural flavours fused with botanical extracts thought to help with “calm and clarity”.

Q. Why did you start Wood Lane Beverages?
In November 2015, I distinctly remember returning home from a family holiday and wanting to bottle the essence of our holiday. Life is hurried so I was looking for an antidote that complimented other relaxation techniques. Then in early 2016, I began my research and development and it has grown since then.

Q. What do you love most about working in small business?
Apart from the practicalities like autonomy and being able to build my business around my family, I am drawn to the feeling of seeing an idea come to life. You invest so much time and energy into growing a small business that even the smallest of wins gives you great satisfaction.

Q. What are your biggest challenges?
Time would have to be the biggest challenge. Sometimes too much of it when you’re waiting for something to happen. Other times, not quite enough. My mind races with all the things I could be achieving. When I set out on this venture, I knew that I was not only going to be selling a new brand but a relatively new concept of drink. Hard selling doesn’t come naturally to me so I’m relying on being authentic and focussing on filling a gap in the drinks scene.

Q. Do you have any tips to deal with chasing late payments?
So far, I have made a point of understanding how other businesses operate and to try to fit this into my payment plans. By doing this, I get a better idea of the big picture and how I fit into it. Then if a payment is overdue, they know that I know the way things operate. It makes it all quite transparent.

“I wish I’D KNOWN how much inner strength was required”

Q. What do you wish you knew when you began your business?
I wish I knew how much inner strength is required. There are days where you wonder what on earth you are doing, but the next day something positive happens to balance it out.

Q. Do you outsource anything?
Yes. I’ve always been of the opinion that if you surround yourself with people who excel at what they do, great things happen. I’m very grateful for the talented professionals who have helped us create our Relaxation Botanicals.

Q. What are you looking forward to next?
I’m in the midst of creating two new flavour profiles and am very excited at the prospect of releasing a range.

Q. Do you take regular time out?
I suffer from wanderlust which I have had to curb in the early stages of setting up a business. However, travel has always given me so much joy and I am quickly appreciating the need to balance worth with pleasure. Be it a weekend beach trip, time out at our family farm or happily planning our next big adventure. I’ll always ensure I have balance.

Q. What do you do to take care of yourself and your relationships?
Absolutely! I do find it hard to switch off when I am on a train of thought especially because I work from home. I tend to look at priorities, switch off my phone and computer and try to be present and enjoy being together with those around me. If I’m going to be honest, my four children are the ones who put things into perspective for me.

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