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So that’s January almost over! Although it’s seemed like the longest month ever, we hope everyone is managing to stay safe.

Every month, we like to award one man and one woman who have been doing an excellent job in the area. This month, our business man of the month in Tim Lloyd.

Tim is a co-founder and managing director of Mindmaps Wellbeing.

Mindmaps Wellbeing are specialists in workplace mental health training & support services by Registered Mental Health Nurses. Their aim is to change workplace culture for the better.

I recently spoke with Tim about his business and the rewards and challenges it brings. Here’s what he had to say in his own words…

“After working for 18 years in frontline mental health services for the NHS in Devon, I recognised there was a need for a more proactive approach to improving mental health in our community.

The demands on services for acute and crisis care are becoming unmanageable and I believed I could make a real difference through sharing mental health awareness and skills in the workplace.

I had been working in a role of educating others through both the NHS and The Open University, helping to shape and develop the future mental health workforce and saw that I could transfer these skills to providing training to a wider audience.

So I began offering my services in August 2018, initially freelance and part-time, and found that many employers valued the courses I offered and I received consistently excellent feedback on my delivery style and depth of knowledge, drawn from my background of personal and professional experiences of mental health.

In January 2019 I decided to take a leap of faith, leaving my stable NHS job and establishing my own business, Mindmaps Wellbeing, delivering a range of mental health training and support services, on a full-time basis.

I couldn’t have done this without the commitment and support of my business partner, Michael, who oversees the operational aspects of the business and recognise the faith he showed in my vision, as he gave up his permanent role to focus on making Mindmaps Wellbeing a success and bringing the dream to life.

It was challenging at first, of course, trying to raise the profile of our business through promotion and networking, raising awareness of the importance of a positive culture around mental health in the workplace and getting local support for what we were determined to achieve.

We were persistent in sharing our message as far and wide as possible, that we need to start more conversations about mental health, to break down the stigma and help us all to feel more at ease having conversations about our mental health and seeking help early.

We have had some incredible feedback from those who have attended our courses, some telling us how they have even saved and changed lives. Hearing that we are having such a positive impact on those we train and even people they come into contact with too is the greatest thing about what we do.

Since March, when the first lock down hit, we have had to do things differently, so are currently delivering our services online.

This has opened us up to a global audience and we have been able to train colleagues in large organisations, with the same message being shared with all employees, wherever they are based.

This has meant we are at a point where we are looking to expand the number of trainers we use to provide our courses, but we still stand by our unique selling point – that we only use Registered Mental Health Nurses for the delivery if all of our services.

Whilst it has been a rollercoaster ride (especially with what 2020 has brought) I am confident that starting my own business was the best thing I have ever done.

Whilst it may be daunting to take that step, I believe you have to follow your heart and if you believe in something enough you will make it happen.”

Thanks Tim for taking the time to speak to us, and congratulations on all you’ve achieved so far!

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