The Gift of Giving — how Amazing Entrepreneurs Mentored disLAB Students

Photo David Freeman University of Westminster Taken at Cherry Duck Studios

In a television studio in Wapping, we gathered. ‘The Business of Story’; ‘The Entrepreneurs Gene’; ‘Me, My Mentor and I’. Any number of labels would do, but this is no obvious television filmed gathering that wishfully could have a crack at replacing BBC’s Dragons Den.

This is bigger in ways that is different — as I peer at my former hat as a former network TV producer. Bigger because this taps into storytelling breaking out of education into the business world. Something for the many navigating the pathway to their careers. The two whilst distinct aren’t presented as a whole, as compatible, but what if they were?

It’s not over yet, this post is a work in progress. No pithy studied archival comments yet! No tying together great quotes from those who’ve made it in business. No triumphalism about marrying business acumen with other disciplines, though in later posts we’ll try and capture the genie.

My friend and co-producer Nicola from the Guild of Entrepreneurs and I said our bit. The Guild of Entrepreneurs are a burgeoning group of some of the UK’s successful business men and women.

Me, I’m introing our cohorts from our MA programme whom for six weeks have had that rare opportunity to be guided by mentors from the Guild. They are special in their own way — storytellers breaching the presumed normality of comms, interactivity, new journalism and docs adding a touch of entrepreneurialism. This is the business of introspection, of also looking outwards, of finding yourself and how to discover what it means to think the business of successfully telling your story. The mentors frame that and more.

No, this post isn’t bodied. Not yet. It’s pure emotion. For five minutes I could write ‘Oh Yeah’, ‘Oh Yeah’, ‘Oh Yeah’ in as many different ways to say ‘Oh Yeah’ allows.

An idea; its prototype that has come to fruition. Its proclaimatin that the exciting things happening are doing so at the interface of education and business and that if that can be captured it offers some insight. Lessons tried, which undergo iterations.

The stories: Exhibitions into Russia’s piquant gentry; a Syrian game underpinned by its unique architect and accompanying theory; the world’s true Afghanistans; the emblematic fallen heroes of Olympics; the international matrix of the two great city’s property markets, and podcast mania upturning traditional journalism.

Yet there are equally powerful tangential stories developing in this exchange: professional friendships, students testing themselves, and overall experiencing the art of giving.

Like I said this is a post in progress, but the gift of giving is not uni-directional and by the time the next posts follows on this subject, we’ll answer the question, how can you possibly doff your cap to the selfless? What can you give to those who’s paean is to give? The Gift of Giving — how Amazing Entrepreneurs Mentored disLAB Students, the video and behind the scenes

About the author: Dr David Dunkley Gyimah heads up the disLAB. He’s a visiting Professor at UBC Vancouver, and a leader in cinema journalism. He’s currently working with Nicola Manning from the Guild of Entrepreneurs on forging storytelling and business. David’s video of his work.

Top Writer & Creative Technologist, Int. Award Winner. Cinemajournalist. Cardiff Uni @jomec. PhD (Dublin). Visiting Prof UBC, Ex BBC/C4News. Apple profiled.

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