Sometimes we just have to stop, look around and take stock. After 14 years of heading up Employees Matter I am often completely overwhelmed by the amazing and inspirational people that I’ve met. People who make a real difference in the world. Everyday heroes. But only when I stop working, thinking, running, parenting – for just a few minutes – do I start to think about these people and the wider picture. Apart from the day to day business of Employees Matter, how can we put these incredible skills and experience to even greater use? How can we expose these minds and hearts to even more people who could benefit from meeting them?
And then Jonny and Neil came along.
It was a sad story with a fairytale ending. And it wasn’t fiction. For the two main characters and their families it was all too real. A decade ago, Londoner Jonny, barely out of his teens, was suffering greatly. One day it all became too much and he took himself to Waterloo Bridge, ready to end everything for good.
Hundreds walked past, eyes down. Neil walked past. Stopped. Looked back at the unhappy man with despair in his eyes, and headed over for a friendly chat. Neil’s decision to stop saved Jonny’s life.
The strangers did not meet for another five years when Jonny decided to seek out the man who had such a huge impact on his future. After a high profile social media campaign, #FindMike, Jonny found ‘Mike’ – who was actually called Neil – and their special bond has yielded some incredible results.
Jonny and Neil are now two of the UK’s leading mental health advocates, taking their powerful story into businesses across the world. Their mission is to promote awareness of mental health struggles in the workplace and to help managers and leaders implement workable strategies for spotting colleagues in trouble and intervening.
When Neil came to me with his latest brainstorm – a ground-breaking conference addressing mental health in the workplace – I was sold. It was the ideal way to take two of Employees Matter’s most popular speakers into a much wider space. Here was a chance to take the good work that we do to the next level.
This Can Happen was born.
And so we’ve spent the last year thinking, planning, marketing, booking, confirming speakers, welcoming delegations and getting very excited about November 20th 2018.
We’ve got incredible partners on board and a growing list of inspirational speakers who will leave delegations with the knowledge, confidence and action plan to support colleagues facing mental health challenges.
Call us now to find out more and become part of our growing mental health army – welcome aboard!