HIGH FLYERS: Inspired by her dad, Aimee is 'stubborn but fair'

Aimee Dixon
Aimee Dixon

In the High Flyers spotlight this week is Aimee Dixon, owner of Mimi’s Speciality Coffee

What was your first job?

My first job was filing invoices in my dad’s office at 13 and worked for him until I was 17.

What qualifications do you have?

I never went to university or received any formal qualifications. I completed my Leaving Certificate in the Institute of Education in Dublin and everything else I’ve learned along the way.

What do you attribute your success to?

Resilience and probably a bit of stubbornness. I’m coming up on a year in business and I feel I have had the whole book thrown at me, but I’ve managed to pull myself through everything. I am also quite good at not letting things affect me. With running your own business, you must be able to keep the show on the road no matter what’s going on behind the scenes, and I think I’m quite good that.

How would you describe yourself to someone who’d never met you?

I’m bit of a perfectionist, and very stubborn when it comes to business, but very fair.

Who do you look up to in business?

My dad. He is my biggest inspiration and he’s who I’ve always aspired to be in business. He has set extremely high standards and I have quite a legacy to follow, but if I could be half the business person he is I would be very proud of myself.

How do you get the best out of people who work for you?

I treat them as people and not as employees, and I lead by example. In business you do have to command a certain amount of respect in order to get people to listen to you. However, when you work with people every day you develop personal relationships with them, and I think it’s important to have those connections with your staff as it creates a nice environment in the workplace. I want my employees to enjoy being around each other and therefore work better with each other and me.

If you could change one thing about doing business in Northern Ireland, what would it be?

I would change the way people treat the hospitality industry. A lot of people have this perception that hospitality is easy and not a ‘real’ job, but it’s one of the most challenging environments to work in. We have to deal with some of the most difficult people day to day, and when you’ve been running around on your feet all day and then are met with unkindness and rudeness, it takes a lot of restraint to keep your ‘front of house’ face on. I think some people could learn to be a lot kinder to hospitality workers.

What website or app could you not do without?

TikTok! So unproductive, I know, but very indulging which can be quite helpful to take your mind off work at the end of the day.

What was the last book you read?

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig - amazing!

What car do you drive?

An electric Mini Cooper.

Tell us something interesting about yourself?

I was an Irish dancer for 15 years.

What’s your greatest passion outside work and family?

Food! I am a massive foodie.