29 February 2024

Funded by the Graham Shapiro Foundation, the programme aims to provide entrepreneurs self-awareness and resources for bouncing forward, delivering vision, value and reduced burn-out risk. To reach these goals participants will identify factors that cause stress to peak and factors that help them recover, spot warning signs of exhaustion and burnout, learn techniques for better recovery, explore how resilience can make them more creative and track and improve health and fitness effects.

The initiative recognises the unique challenges entrepreneurs face in the world of work, particularly young entrepreneurs, as they must make crucial decisions and tackle demanding workloads with little support or opportunities for delegation.

The programme offers one-to-one coaching with a certified member of the Centre for Workplace Resilience and access to psychometric tools and heart monitor equipment to help students recognise and measure their own beliefs, behaviours and environmental factors that can help protect them against stress and burnout.

The event was held at Westminster’s Regent Campus and was attended by the six entrepreneurial alumni that hope to learn how to grow their businesses through the programme. Opening the event was Professor Graham Shapiro, Chair of Trustees at the Graham Shapiro Foundation and Visiting Professor of the University of Westminster. He spoke to the group about his career journey and his experiences with burn out, pointing out the importance of prioritising mental health.

Justin Haroun, Co-Founder and Director of the Self-Leadership Programme at the University’s Centre for Resilience, then followed and gave a presentation on how the programme will address each individual’s unique needs through the specialised monitoring and one to one coaching. He too explained the importance of recovery, especially as an entrepreneur.

Speaking about the Programme Professor Shapiro said: “In this fast paced world, the taboo of burnout and mental health is often overlooked, and this programme gives a chance for students to prioritise both passion and motivation with the skills and support to aid taking care of their well-being. Resilience training is critical for entrepreneurs to thrive in the face of adversity. I hope that all participants leave the Programme with a positive mindset, having reflected on how they can move forward with their emotional well-being to navigate challenges in business with confidence. The Graham Shapiro Foundation is proud to support.”

Justin Haroun added: “Westminster’s WeNetwork and the Centre for Resilience are proud to support our entrepreneurial students as they innovate and create. They do this through a reimagining of the world around them; they are creators of new stories for a better world. However all too often the toll on the entrepreneurial storyteller can be a tough, exhausting and lonely journey. We are excited to help our storytellers as they embark on their journeys with the support from the Graham Shapiro Foundation. Bringing together knowledge, experience and wisdom to help these new stories, and the entrepreneurs who had the vision to dream them up, flourish.”

This programme contributes towards the Good Health and Well-being (3) development goal of the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which were adopted by the University of Westminster to help make the University a more sustainable, responsible and inclusive place to live, work and study.

Find out more about the Self-Leadership Programme for Student Entrepreneurs at the University of Westminster.