Let me set the scene. A smart West End office, frothy cappuccinos served in elegant Villeroy & Boch New Wave. This is not our usual team rendezvous. It’s a very special occasion – the second This Can Happen Advisory Editorial Board meeting! Why so posh, you may ask? It was all thanks to the wonderful people at Raymond James who generously allowed us to hunker down in a meeting room in their plush Conduit Street office.
And even more exciting than our glamorous venue was the assembly of incredible people who gave up their precious evening to offer wisdom, experience and delightful company for This Can Happen. The TCH team is made up of so many different professions and characters. We really are a diverse lot. Event planners, marketing bods, salespeople, HR specialists, copywriters, mental health advocates and social media specialists. And our Editorial Advisory Board adds another huge splash of diversity.
Let me introduce the special people who are helping us hone the content and schedule to ensure we deliver a relevant and pioneering conference in November with practical toolkits for delegations to take back to their workplaces.
Helping us shape the agenda are:
Rebecca Galustian, a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist with over 15 years experience working as an individual and group therapist. She works in schools, in the NHS and with patients in private psychiatric units, as well as with forensic services and rehabilitation centres. Rebecca thinks outside the box and brings an intelligent warmth to the room.
Danie Du Plessis is Senior Vice President, Head of Worldwide Medical Affairs at GSK. He is responsible for medical affairs and governance across the Europe, Emerging Markets & Australasia, US and Japan regions and luckily for us is based in the UK, so we can benefit from his unique wisdom and dapper charm at our meetings.
James Ski is a mental health advocate who speaks openly and positively about these prescient issues. He left LinkedIn after 3 years to found Sales Confidence – the largest network of technology founders and sales professionals in the UK. He couldn’t be with us in person but contributed in a profound way over the phone. His dulcet tones filled the room and our minds, as he brought personal and professional experience to every subject.
We talked about so many things, including the incredible speakers we have so far confirmed – all international leaders in their field, who will soon be publically announced. We planned which professional panellists and facilitators will set the tone for each session and considered proposals for the evolving framework and content of the day. We examined the possibility of making the conference interactive and visual, and ways of including and engaging delegations from businesses of every size and from every sector.
One thing we can confirm is that you will leave each session with a powerful outcome and a useful toolkit for identifying colleagues with mental health issues and stepping in to help them sensitively yet decisively. The conference will empower teams and individuals to become mental health advocates in their workplace. We will continue to bring you details in the coming months.
The third monthly TCH EAB will take place in April in London and we will report on our progress in this blog. Watch this space!