If there is one-word Belynda Lee would use to describe herself, it is tenacious. And this indelible quality has helped her to get up and show up to face adversity, despite all odds.
From an immigrant worker in Canada who has turned away from jobs for ‘not speaking proper English Belynda is now the Chief Operating Officer of a Multi-Million Dollar Direct Selling Company based in Dubai UAE and has been invited to speak at various Leadership Platforms. In her eventful career spanning two decades, she has built, restored, and expanded businesses with some of the fastest-growing, billion-dollar companies including Elizabeth Arden Red Door, Art Institutes, Usana Health Science, Neroa International, Organo, and more.
Tenacity is not a habit she acquired during her work culture, rather an inherent quality she imbibed since childhood.
Growing up in a large joint family in a large mansion in Watten Estate, Singapore, Belynda’s first role model, and her icon was her grandpa, Lee, who was a timber merchant. Through the gregarious man, she learned the basics of business ethics, customer relations, and quality of service. Living with more than 20 family members under one roof, she learned to understand human dynamics, teamwork, and even a little bit of politics.
As she migrated to Canada in the early 90s, her first job was a clerk at a convenience store. Soon she found herself divorced, with two young children and no regular source of income. Since then there has been no looking back for Belynda. She dedicated herself to hard work with the determination of fighting to the finish. As she steadily climbed the corporate ladder in her career, she went on to further her education and completed her Master’s in Business Administration from Argosy University in Seattle.
Conquering the business world
Belynda’s key strength lies in the fact that she is a people’s representative. Due to her efficacious personality, she is able to bring out the best in her colleagues and teams. Her strategy is to let people put ideas on the table and share that knowledge efficiently.
She quotes: “The sharing economy is prized in our culture. Just look around us, you will notice people value and benefit from a collective effort that is accessible to anyone.
Best-in-class companies earn their respect and success by recognizing and empowering people through knowledge sharing and professional growth. This is why we embrace a knowledge-sharing culture which will be the key to our success.”
She has built strong international industry relationships with key corporate vendors and field sales teams and has an excellent reputation that shows in retention and loyalty of high-profile, high-volume field associates. Exceptionally well organized with a track record that demonstrates self-motivation, creativity, and initiative to achieve both personal and corporate goals made her an excellent choice as a C-Level executive.
Being a leader is a job and a half
She quotes: “As a leader, you are constantly thinking of ways to improve your work and your team’s performance. So to be a good leader, you have to lead with your heart. And in effect, it has helped me be a better person by improving my strengths.”
Her international business acumen along with her unique ability to perform as a cross-functional strategist assists her in facilitating multi-channel distribution strategies that benefit both corporate and sales teams globally.
Belynda is focused on creating a strong foundation for ASCIRA’s rapid global growth. She emphasizes organizational alignment, execution, and quality, with a never-ending focus on the end-customer.
Mentor, author, and guide
She also serves as a mentor and coach for numerous young professionals who are learning the corporate system, thriving to excel in their careers. Her other interests involve restoring unloved homes and she has left her mark in multiple properties in one of the most aggressive real estate markets
Belynda penned her first book "Five-Inch Heels - When Women Step Into Power and Success" in 2014 which was autobiographical. The book delves into how one person can realize their own worth and power to alter the course of life. In it, she teaches how effective servant leadership can be compassionate and inspiring. "Five-Inch Heels" went on to become a bestseller in North America.
Influenced by her own struggle, Belynda is also passionate about empowering other women. Whenever possible, she speaks on different platforms to share her story of adversity and conquers, and how the Power of Choice-Change-Mind can alter anyone's destiny.
In 2008, Belynda started the Canadian Women in a Business tour to highlight the success of female entrepreneurs. Her ongoing mission is to create personal and professional examples for others to follow while making a global impact amongst females today and in the future.
Life in Dubai
Belynda envisages a bright future in Dubai as it is the perfect melting pot of diversity, modern infrastructure, world-class business facilities, and multicultural ideas. She works round the clock as she has partners and clients from around the world. When not in the board room or at power meetings, she likes to unwind by indulging in retail therapy…in her five-inch heels of course.
In 2012, she has presented an Outstanding Leadership Award from Global Women Summit in Vancouver, Canada for creating a platform to recognize successful female entrepreneurs. In 2013, at the 13th Annual International Leadership and Financial Summit, Dr. Deavra Daughtry CEO of Texas Women’s Empowerment Foundation (TWEF), presented her an International Leadership Award for her leadership role and her contribution to society as an inspirational speaker at various empowering platforms. In 2014, she was awarded "Leader of the Year" at the 10th Annual Women of Worth Conference. In the same year, she was also awarded the "Top Chinese Women of Canada" award from United Global Chinese Women Association in Canada.
She was also honored with the International Leadership Award from the Texas Women’s Empowerment Foundation (TWEF) for her contributions to society.
What do these awards mean to her?
She quotes: “It is very inspirational and rewarding to receive awards, but I don’t work just to receive them. Success is always a work in progress. If you put 100% dedication in your work and strive for excellence, the awards will naturally come to you.’