Online, Hopin



Featuring Pip Jamieson, founder of The Dots, James Routledge, founder of Sanctus, and Sandra De Monte, founder of MindBerry, our final MeetUp of the year puts founder mental wellbeing front and centre. 

Being a startup founder can be vitalising, rewarding, and ultimately fulfilling - but the job comes with incredible responsibility, long hours, isolation and stress. 2020 has intensified the challenges founders face running their startups, often at home, away from their teams, and under increased pressure of an economy in recession. 

We all need support in managing our mental wellbeing - and this starts with an honest conversation about it. 

At our next MeetUp, we want to talk openly about the personal and professional toll that comes with the startup territory - and how, as founders, we can move forward in a sustainable way for ourselves, and our businesses. 

Joining us on the panel is Pip Jamieson, founder of The Dots, the go-to online, global community for networking and hiring across the creative industries. Pip describes herself as “delightfully dyslexic” and being a dyslexic sole female tech founder, Pip has put promoting social responsibility and helping businesses build diverse teams at the heart of everything she does. 

It was James Routledge’s own battle with anxiety, when he closed his first startup, that led him to launch Sanctus. He was experiencing stress, panic attacks and sleepless nights, but didn’t feel he could confide in his new colleagues. “I didn’t talk about it, I didn’t want to admit weakness or vulnerability,” he says. Sanctus offers coaching sessions to businesses to help them improve their approach to mental health. 

In a small business environment, he says founders should lead by example when it comes to talking about, and managing, mental wellbeing: 

“Create a culture where vulnerability is accepted and it’s ok for people to say: ‘I’m not feeling so good, this didn’t go so well or I’m feeling a little bit stressed.’ Mental health is not only about the darkness and depression - that’s like only talking about obesity and disease in physical health.”

Sandra De Monte founded MindBerry as a technological solution to psychotherapy, counselling and mental health coaching. She’s delivered successful mental wellbeing workshops for global companies such as Google, and is a BACP registered Integrative Psychotherapist and certified Online Counsellor. 

It can be hard to ask for help as a founder. We all need support, empathy and a sympathetic ear sometimes. It’s not always easy to find, and we hope this MeetUp can help.

What Will Happen On The Night?

Our MeetUps are designed for digital, and free to attend. A time for our community to come together, learn from experts, founders and each other, to find inspiration and guidance, and to come away with practical solutions to act on.

After a brief introduction, you’ll hear from Pip, James and Sandra on our Main Stage, interviewed by Virgin StartUp Mentor, Ben Keene. There’ll be a chance for audience questions before we break out into post-panel sessions, where you can take time to reflect on the conversations, explore the themes of the discussion, ask questions of each other and learn more about Virgin StartUp.

Each MeetUp lasts 2 hours and you’ll be able to experience it from the comfort of your own home. We use a platform called Hopin, which you’ll need a free account on to join the event. 

Tickets are free, but strictly limited, so grab yours today!


Here's what we've got in store: 

6:00PM–6:05PM · Roll up, settle in!
6:05PM–6:20PM · Introduction | Ben Keene and Lissa Gillott
6:20PM–7:20PM · Panel Discussion | Mental Health as a Founder: The Path Forward
7:20PM–8:10PM · Breakout Sessions | Ask Virgin StartUp anything
8:10PM–8:20PM · Close | Lissa Gillott

Places are strictly limited - sign up today.


Terms & Conditions: 
i. Speakers and attendees are subject to change and we do not guarantee that any specific speakers or participants will appear at the event. However, we will always try to find a suitable replacement if one of our key speakers or participants is unable to attend.
ii. Views expressed by speakers at the event may not be the views of Virgin StartUp. Information and materials shared are provided on an “as is” basis and Virgin StartUp makes no warranty regarding the accuracy or completeness of these.
iii. By ordering a ticket and attending the online event, you consent to being recorded and photographed – either by film or screen casting - as an attendee and participant and to any subsequent footage and photographs of the event being used by Virgin StartUp in any medium for the promotion and marketing of Virgin StartUp and the Virgin group.