LinkedIn Changemakers are a selected group of nine LinkedIn members and creators actively driving change in the topics most important to UK professionals. The #Changemakers campaign spotlights individuals who each represent causes that impact the world of work; mental health, the future of work, gender equality, racial equality, LGBTQ+ equality, equality for professionals with disabilities, sustainability, and unemployment/career setbacks. Neil Laybourn is the Changemaker for #MentalHealth.
Neil Laybourn’s journey and passion in mental health and well-being stems from his own profound experience of instigating a suicide intervention on London Waterloo Bridge after witnessing a stranger attempting to take their own life in 2008. That 30-minute conversation would continue to have a profound impact on both Neil and that stranger, yet neither of them would have guessed how much. Six years later they were reunited through a viral social media search (#FindMike).
This inspired Neil to set up multiple charities and organisations to help eradicate the stigma of mental health, offering real support and solutions to professionals facing challenges with their mental health.
Neil’s role in the suicide intervention was recognised through a Pride of Britain award, and in 2015 Channel 4 told this powerful story in the award-winning ‘Stranger on the Bridge’ documentary. Neil went on to be awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Bristol in recognition of his mental health campaigning and advocacy work and. In 2018, he co-founded the charity Beyond Shame Beyond Stigma, a mental health education charity supporting young people.
Neil has completed over 250 keynote speaking events globally, spanning more than 200 different organisations across more than 25 different business sectors. He has also visited and presented to NHS trusts, schools, and universities in the UK.
This year Neil is working on bringing employees back into the room together, supporting leading industry workplace mental health events through generating partnerships and participation initiatives.
‘As part of my role as a LinkedIn Changemaker, I’ll be specifically focusing on affecting positive change on mental health in the workplace. My focus will be bringing employees “back into the room”, supporting leading industry workplace mental health events through generating partnerships and participation initiatives. I want this conversation to be truly diverse encompassing all employers large and small.‘
Neil’s first message will be ‘Getting back together’ encouraging people to once again make the ‘physical venue’ the chosen forum to convene. A driving force for Neil is to promote connectivity face to face.
Click here for a LinkedIn video of Neil talking about employers prioritising mental health as much as physical health.