Bobby is a Newman University graduate who started her entrepreneurial journey with winning a beer mat business competition!
Bobby, tell us about yourself…
“My name is Bobby, no that’s not short for Roberta and yes, surprise, I am a woman! (Two statements I’m met with quite frequently). I’m an MSc Graduate having studied at Newman University for both my undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. My background is in mental health and I’m now a qualified Psychotherapist with 3+ years’ experience as a counsellor. I’m currently in the process of publishing two pieces of research associated with the emotional impact of individuals living with the chronic health condition ‘Myalgic Encephalomyelitis’ (ME). I find this topic very interesting scientifically, politically and personally.”
Tell us more about your start up…
“Organically, my business is built around my private practice where I see individuals weekly for Psychotherapy. I have an office in Hall Green and Earlswood. As an extension of my experience in mental health and a desire to work within a more social setting, I am directing several projects which work with children, young people and their families to facilitate their mental health and future sense of value within society. I have collaborated with tuition providers, social enterprises, and holistic wellbeing providers, and recently held my first networking event with Santander in Birmingham town centre.”
What made you jump at the chance of coming on BSEEN?
“I became part of the BSEEN programme through quite an unintentional sequence of events. There was a beer mat competition at Newman where you had to write your business idea on a beer mat for the chance to win £30 amazon voucher. I saw it around the university for a while but never really did anything about it. I always knew I wanted to own my own private practice but didn’t really consider myself as a budding entrepreneur. It wasn’t until someone put a beer mat in my hand and gave me a pen that I thought ‘well, why not!’. Turns out, I won! From there I was introduced to Ben Osborne and the rest is history, I just kept saying yes to every opportunity that was put in front of me, BSEEN was one of them. It sounded like just what I needed to give me the confidence and foundations to start to really build my private practice.”
What do you think you have learned the most from your BSEEN journey?
“The world really is your oyster. I never realised how possible it could be for me to be ‘out there’ and to meet new people almost every day. The most important thing I have learned and had reinforced over and over again is that ‘we cannot succeed in isolation’. As a therapist, I wholeheartedly believe that humans thrive in healthy relationships, we need others to survive. The support and encouragement I have had has been outstanding and I wouldn’t be where I am now without people.”
What has been your business stand out moment since being on BSEEN?
“People knowing who I am. It is so bizarre for me to meet some people and they say ‘oh yeah I know you, you’re from Serenity’. It blows my mind. People know my business. It really makes me feel like I’m making an impact.”
Any advice for entrepreneurial students or graduates thinking about starting their own business?
“Just say yes, figure the rest out later and ASK FOR HELP! If you have the drive, energy and the passion to make things happen, you will.”
What are your next steps for your business?
“The next steps for Serenity is to start to offer online video counselling for chronically ill individuals who are unable to leave the house due to their illness. These people are in desperate need of emotional and psychological support and it’s something I will strive to offer.”