- Everything we do has to be to further our mission of making people’s lives brilliant.
- Maintain perspective – nothing is as important as something that is important.
- Laugh – be laughing, be laughed at, just have a laugh. It helps with the point above.
- Be childlike smart – imaginative, adventurous, curious… any other way is dull.
- Listen – always be listening, so that we’re always learning and more likely to be able to help.
- Never stand for mediocrity – don’t believe in averages, they’re useless benchmarks. Like asking a loving mother if your work is great, you’re never going to get an honest answer.
- Collaborate – learn to work with others to make things happen.
- If you look back at the end of the day and can’t honestly see your contribution, then you better make tomorrow nothing like today.
- Be fearless – stand for something. We should never be worried about being judged or failing.
- Every project should take into account the unintended consequences and these should be minimised.
CAST is accelerating the use of technology for social impact and since we have such shared missions, we are working together as their product partner. In particular, this involves working their FUSE programme – which is the UK’s first charity digital accelerator. Over the last two years we have worked on social innovation challenges with Women’s Aid, Oxfam, Breast Cancer Care, Clore and many more charities.
Dan Sutch, Co-Founder and Director, CAST
“Digital technology offers profound new ways to address pressing social challenges. But it is not just the code and the computation that offers this, but the problem-solving approaches of great digital design teams. Super Being is a great example of this: a team with diverse skillsets that works effectively with organisations large and small to address big challenges.”
Working with Breast Cancer Care (now Breast Cancer Now) and CAST (The Centre for the Acceleration of Social Technology), we defined a strategic outcome to help women adjust to life after treatment. Currently, after-care for breast cancer survivors is almost non-existent. Whether experiencing side effects of treatment, trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle or finding it hard to make sense of their experience with breast cancer, many people find it hard adjusting to their new lives and finding their “new normal”.
We used insights from data and co-creation to come up with a simple card-based app called BECCA to deliver trusted and curated information to women who need it. It’s now available as a web app, an iPhone app, and an Android app, with over 43,000 women using it. We’re excited because it’s still the basic version, but we’ve just received funding from Big Lottery to now do the complex bit – using machine learning to deliver personalised support to each woman using BECCA. It’s a perfect example of building a digital product in a way that grows with the user- base to deliver impact at every single stage.
Betty Hart, BECCA user
“I have found the BECCA app to be inspiring and full of helpful advice, packed with lots of useful information and suggestions. A must for anyone to help them move forward after breast cancer treatment.”
BECCA has even been nominated for two BMA Patient Information awards, and as we build the full version, the technology will be open-sourced so other charities can use it for their needs too.
Samia al Qadhi, Chief Executive at Breast Cancer Care
“Super Being has been working in partnership with Breast Cancer Care since 2016 to deliver BECCA. A scalable service that supports women affected by breast cancer but also has the potential to support a wider audience of people living with long-term health conditions. The partnership with Super Being involves support on a technical level, building the BECCA app, but they also play a role in user research, service design, and delivering the overall vision for the product. The values of both organisations closely align and we hope this will be a long-term partnership which will see BECCA become the go-to companion for every woman affected by breast cancer.”
Being Mankind is one of our own social ventures.
Imagine a world where gender stereotypes have no power? Imagine a world where kids are given the chance to truly understand themselves? Imagine a world where ‘Man Up!’ means nothing, but ‘Be Human, Be Yourself’ does? That’s what we’re doing. We’ve published a book called Being ManKind Volume 1 and we successfully ran our ownKickstarter campaign to build a community around it. (We raised over £76k in 30 days). Over 3000 people are already enjoying Being ManKind Volume 1 and for every book bought, we also donate one to a school we work with). The book has been bought by people of all ages and backgrounds. The demand has been so great, we are now looking to go big. We’re currently finishing up Volume 2 and have also written a film for which we are now looking for production funding.
Our stories are igniting conversations in schools and youth organisations. We have created a series of lesson plans and workshops to accompany the donated books. The co-created plans, for 9-11 years and 11+ years, are perfectly suited for schools (PSHE or registration period), youth organisations and older groups (e.g. prison, PRUs). Each session addresses a different, thought- provoking topic, such as body image, mental health and relationships. The common thread throughout the series of eight sessions is to inspire young people to be open, honest and individual thinkers. Feedback from students demonstrates the power of using real-life experiences to raise important issues, “I liked reading about other people’s stories, they taught us that we should treat others equally” (Year 8). When asked about what messages they had learned, one Year 6 student summed it up perfectly “To be proud of who you are and to be an excellent role model to others”.
Get a book and explore our work at www.beingmankind.org
Nasima Morshed, Uxendon Manor Primary School (Year 6 teacher)
“Fun! Innovative! Inspirational! PSHE lessons have been re- energised with core values which make us human. The children have been thoroughly engaged through stimulating stories, hands-on activities; from making prototype plans for a toy to team building towers. Lifelong skills which go beyond the classroom.”
With two hit shows already under her belt, Luisa and Super Being Arts have been working together to help grow her digital presence and community. Through our work with Luisa we have embarked on a mission to change the way the industry works for comics, and it’s working – Luisa has sold out the O2 Kentish Town, the Shepherds Bush Empire and many other areas without needing the traditional giants behind her. She’s also had her hit show “What Would Beyonce Do?” trending on BBC iPlayer.
This is a great example of our breadth of skills beyond the project goals themselves – not only is our Founder working with Luisa on her BBC show out later this year, he’s also performed at her Gala at the Birmingham Hippodrome. We do what it takes, and we do it well!
How can you help? We’re just getting started and we’re looking for a sponsor to take this plan to the next level.
“It’s rare to work with a company that feels like a friend. My time with Super Being has been a consistent mutual conversation, tackling challenges as they arise and undertaking fresh responses and ideas to help my business grow. As a fellow comic and entrepreneur, Darshan has helped me out of some challenging situations and given invaluable insight, above and beyond the brief. My work is creative and comes from the heart so it’s wonderful to have a company that really understand this and has a social conscience. I hope we keep growing together!”
This is project in partnership with Comic Relief, CAST, Oxfam and social entrepreneur, Seb Mayfield. It initially started by looking at how to support people who end up using foodbanks.
Looking at the data, there were huge systemic issues at play but one thing stood out – the poverty premium. People on low incomes pay proportionately more for staples items – due to the way they have to shop, everything costs more. This leads to financial shocks and people can’t save. What if we could solve this with dignity?
So we came up with QuidsIn. After a few prototypes were tested, we settled on an idea and built an economic model around it. You register your debit card after receiving a referral code, you then shop normally and you’re issued a cashback to reduce the premium. That cashback is turned into an emergency savings pot. When you withdraw from that pot (if you’ve opted in) – it sends a signal to an offline charity in your area who can provide you with support. This then builds community and financial resilience in a way that works best for the people the project supports.
We’re now using Open Banking to build this, and the reason the retailers are on board is because it helps them reach an audience they are losing, helps them reduce food waste, and gives them a more scalable way of giving back to the communities they work in. Everybody wins and through this experiment, we’ll learn more about other ways to reduce the poverty premium.
The Brilliant Club is a non-profit organisation that aims to widen access to university for students from under-represented groups. The challenge was – how can they be in every school in the country, helping every single young person with potential?
The first step of our work with The Brilliant Club was to redevelop their online tutoring platform allowing pupils to consult with their tutors in a safe and moderated live chat environment, submit assignments, receive grades & feedback, and help tutors track monitoring data.
After that, we moved on to a more ambitious project together: building a tool that can measure the impact of their school interventions. With the help of innovative methodologies applied to national student data, complemented by a collection of assessments, schools will be able to assess the impact of The Brilliant Club’s programme, whilst The Brilliant Club can use all collected data to improve their programme and provide more impactful help to young people.
We’re only at the beginning of what this can do but imagine if every pupil and school can see progress and see a path laid out in front of them?
Jonathan Sobczyk – Co-Founder Brilliant Club and Co-Founder at ImpactEd.
“I have worked with Super Being on multiple projects both at The Brilliant Club and at ImpactEd. They always focus on outcomes rather than outputs which 100% aligns with how I feel the social sector should position itself. SBL creatively design digital products in a user-centered way and have been great to work with. This also means we end up working collaboratively in a way that’s all about the innovation being meaningful to those it’s designed for.”
State of Ambition is a new and exciting space between formal education and the real world. It’s where 16-30 year olds make connections, demonstrate grit, grow their skills and start making their dreams come true. Our mission is to nurture future generations of leaders to be collaborative, compassionate and determined.
Through our digital relationship-building and learning platform, we enable brilliant but underserved 16-30 year olds to connect online with a variety of role models at ambitious companies. The role models help them grow through industry advice and feedback on digital tasks set over a 21 day period. In providing this help the role models also benefit, as they engage further with their employer’s culture and reinforce their knowledge of required skillsets. Continuous learning and developing benefits everyone involved and it takes minutes.
During our trial period of 6 months, our young people engaged with over 166,000 people, had over 2700 conversations and over 456 opportunities as a result.
Since launching, SoA has been funded by Super Being Labs, Big Issue Invest and WayraUnltd (Telefonica’s acceleration programme). We also have a high profile board of advisors, who are some of the most helpful people we’ve ever met. This is going to be huge. If you would like to roll this out in your firm or are a youth organisation who wants to use the platform, then we’d love to talk. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org – Thanks.
We worked with the Lucy Hannah and her team at the Commonwealth Foundation to relaunch a 25-year-old book price by rebranding it the initiative to Commonwealth Writers. It now collaborates across art forms to bring transformative stories to global audiences. Over 3 years we grew it from being meaningful in a handful of countries to working across all the Commonwealth Countries. We’ve carefully grown a community of thousands of creative practitioners who are all engaged in the various programmes coming out of Commonwealth Writers (for example, when we started the Short Story prize had about 400 entries from a handful of countries, and last year it had over 5000 entries from across every country in the Commonwealth Country. The programme has had films premiered at festivals, it’s had anthologies published and spin-off projects like addastories.com too. The whole project has been so successful it was embedded as the main cultural focus of the Commonwealth Foundation’s strategy.
Lucy Hannah – Programme Manager, Commonwealth Foundation
“Super Being is consistently impressive and offers the perfect combination of reliability, creativity and innovation. They have designed and delivered a brand, a strategic digital overview, creative output and ultimately a huge community for Commonwealth Writers. They’ve alwyays been on hand, whether that’s working on the digital campaigns in London or flying out to countries like Bangladesh or Uganda at the last minute to help run and film a cultural programme. All of this has helped us to achieve our goals and continue to grow our community across the arts, from writing to poetry to film. It’s been like having a team who just get it and the programme is now fully embedded in 52 countries and growing every year.”
powers:branding . communications . Design . digital strategy . Experience Design . film . humour . Product Development . product innovation . Project Management . Research . Young People
Darshan graduated with a MA in Economics and Modern History from the University of St Andrews (and almost embarked on a PhD in anti-terrorism in the USA but the entrepreneurial world was too much of a draw), and has over 10 years of experience working in start-ups, branding, innovation, communications and digital. His passion is using all those skills to tackle real social and industry challenges. This led him to create Super Being Labs and build a team around this vision.
Over his career, he’s created campaigns, digital products and strategies for Adidas, Sanyo, the Commonwealth Foundation, the National Trust, the Technology Strategy Board, Forum for the Future and many more.Outside of work, Darshan is a non-exec at Sporting Memories (an org using sporting reminiscence to fight dementia and isolation for the elderly), as well as Chair for a small charity (STCA) in Kings Cross, on the advisory board for the British Council’s Entrepre
neurial Africa Programme, on the NSPCC’s Digital Taskforce to help tackle the multiple challenges around supporting young people at risk, and finally has recently joined the Ventures Advisory Board at UnLtd – the Foundation for social entrepreneurs, as well being appointed Social Entrepreneur in Residence at UnLtd.
powers:Product Development . product innovation . systems administration . Systems Architecture and Design . Web Development
Alex and coding go together like gin and tonic. He has years of experience in programming, with a degree in computer science as well as a Masters in bioinformatics, where he specialised in big data and machine learning. He’s a full stack developer with experience in systems admin, specifically building scalable and secure web application architectures on the AWS platform. He also has deep experience in automated server provisioning and systems architecture design.
With his skills in PHP, Ruby on Rails and Java, he has built some cool digital products over the years.
Ultimately he believes in simplicity for the user, even if it means added complexity for the developer, and is a big fan of behaviour driven development, as testing always pays you back in spades down the road. On the front end, he believes in mobile first and considers a website to be complete only when there is nothing left to take away.
A fun fact – he also started a games website, which generated over £1m in revenue for partners like Amazon, Tesco, and Littlewoods. This process taught him how to run a business and also helped develop his SEO and PPC marketing skills.
When he’s not tapping out code, he enjoys coffee, craft beer, cooking, and most of all cycling – show him a hill and he’ll always want to suffer his way to the top. He’s also scuba dived all around the world and has amazingly curly hair.
powers:Capoeira . Drawing . Photography . Project Management . Research
Dr Priya Dabasia is in charge of our research methodology and protocols, especially for impact and health projects. She is also a producer and photographer for many of our impact projects.
Priya is actually a highly experienced optometrist, specialising in the field of glaucoma detection, and has been practising since 2004. Priya completed her pre-registration training at City University for which she was awarded the prestigious Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers’ Prize, and the George Wheatcroft Prize. In September 2005, Priya was appointed visiting tutor at City University, teaching on internal university lecture programmes at both postgraduate (MSc) and undergraduate level. Alongside her main role, Priya continued to develop her clinical experience with locum clinics, both at the university and in independent community practice. Priya writes CET accredited articles for journals The Optician and Optometry in Practice. In March 2013, Priya was awarded the Geoffrey Hall, Lightmongers Prize for services to City University. Priya also has a PhD for a project titled ‘A study of the role of advanced technologies in glaucoma case-finding’ and has recently finished a Postdoc and is now working with us to help us with our mission.
Outside her work as a researcher, optometrist and wildlife photographer, Priya enjoys playing Capoeira twice weekly and travelling around the world.
Lucy is driven by the transformative power of stories. She started her career as a newspaper journalist and went on to be a factual programmes producer for BBC TV and BBC World Service Radio. She moved on into drama, where she worked for Paines Plough theatre. In 1995, she returned to the BBC (Drama) where she co-founded BBC Writers Room, which is now the public face of the BBC to the UK writing community – online and in the real world. She went on to be writer-in-residence at HMP Rochester (Young Offenders) and to work with writers and dramatists in areas of conflict, including : Afghanistan, South Sudan, Chechnya, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan. In 2011, she founded and led Commonwealth Writers (where she was a client of ours!). Responsive and proactive, it tackles the challenges faced by writers in the 53 countries of the Commonwealth. Since 2017 she has worked for a variety of national and international organisations, including : INTENT New Theatre, the British Council, BBC Media Action, Commonwealth Foundation and Okapi Consulting, to design, develop and deliver creative and cultural initiatives. She is on the board of: Papertrail Theatre, Vital Xposure Theatre and Oval House Theatre in the UK. Also, a board member of the Children’s Radio Foundation in South Africa and she is a director of the NGC BOCAS Lit Fest in Trinidad.
She is now with us, helping us grow Super Being Arts into a force that uses the arts for social good.
powers:Directing . film . humour . Project Management . Screenwriting
Collaborating with Super Being Labs on film and storytelling projects with his production company Turtle Canyon, Stu is the man you need to speak to get some quality storytelling via film, animation or stage.
Stuart is a director, comic and writer, creating great new films and comedy with exciting new talent and established stars. He has worked with Robert Lindsay, Nick Helm, Julia Davis, Jessie Cave, Diana Weston, Jake Lloyd, James Acaster and Elizabeth Tan. He has spearheaded the online comedy channel for Turtle Canyon Media and racked up 700,000 hits for the regular stream of viral hits, sketches, web series and short films. The majority of the content is directed by Stuart and has been featured worldwide in publications such as The Huffington Post, The Poke, The Daily Mirror, Upworthy, The Daily Star and the British Comedy Guide. He is developing a range of TV shows with comedians and produced video content for Nick Helm’s upcoming BBC3 series.
Stuart’s latest short film “Chubby Bunny” has played at film festivals worldwide including The New York Comedy Film Festival and The London Short Film Festival, and has been shortlisted for awards in Seattle and at the prestigious Van D’Or awards. His most recent short “Over To You At 2” was nominated for Best Screenplay at the One Shot Movie Competition. Of course alongside all this, he has also worked on corporate films for 12 years, working all over the world and for some of the biggest international companies.
Not only is Stu blooming funny, he also has a very weird thing for Haribo and Panini football stickers.
powers:Languages . Project Management . Publishing . Writing
Jenny is a super smart cookie who not only speaks multiple languages, but also has a passion for producing brilliant things. She studied Russian and Italian at the University of St Andrews and then went on to gain a Masters in Screen Translation and Subtitling. She has 5 years’ experience in the publishing industry, including one year at a publishing house in Florence, and most recently she has worked in production for a top financial magazine.
Outside of work, Jenny loves cooking, travelling and eating good food with friends and family – ideally all of those combined. Her role as a Producer at Super Being Labs is to ensure that our projects go swimmingly from conception to launch.
powers:communications . Design . digital strategy . Product Design . Product Development . product innovation . Product Management
When Stefan was a kid, he started making robots out of toothpicks and fishing cork. As he grew up he still wanted to create, so he taught himself the skills needed for his creations – starting off with graphic design, 3D modelling and basic animation, and then moving onto learning how to sew and even basic carpentry.
From here began his love of solving things creatively. He went on to study Marketing in Birmingham, and after working on a few start-ups, he learnt to stitch his creative skills with his product development skills. Welcome to the grown-up kid turned product manager – Stefan Moghina.
powers:Business Models . product innovation . Product Management . service design . Strategy
Having studied Psychology, Ursule decided she wanted to compliment her social and research focused background with business and spent a couple of years working in financial services, focused on business analysis and strategy. Being hungry for a new challenge and tired of the corporate culture, she then moved on to work at a startup in Malaysia for half a year, focusing on customer insight and product strategy. However, as she missed the English rain a little bit too much, she got back to London and worked at Studio B. In the end, she was looking to focus entirely on using her skills to do good. So, she joined our mission.
Her passion for social impact is clear – from running psychology-education groups for people with eating disorders to consulting social enterprises.
Fun fact – Ursule used to teach jazz dance. She also loves long dinner-table discussions, especially if it’s about politics, education, mental health, international development, traveling, food, culture, and the list goes on and on!
powers:Business Models . communications . digital strategy . Product Development . Web Design . Web Development
Marcus or ‘mog’ as he is more commonly referred to has a background as colourful as his hair throughout his teenage years. From working for the most advanced body modification clinics at the time, to working just about every position in a photographic studio and lab before the days of digital, dj-ing with actual records and shooting skateboarding in the late nineties – he thankfully went on the full embrace the digital age.
With a degree in multimedia arts and 4 years of teaching and writing course for universities under his belt, he began to merge skills in imaging, digital strategy, small business management and development towards WordPress based solutions for business of all sizes.
Now with over 10 years of coding experience he specialises in solving client problems using scalable and secure web-based solutions.
Of course you have to tolerate the fact that he also has a double life as a professional kite surfer, jet-setting around the world to unbelievable locations with his professional kite surfer wife and magazine editor in tow, so whatever you do don’t ask him how his day is going as it won’t make yours any better.
powers:humour . Screenwriting . storytelling . Writing
As an actor and writer, Ed trained at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama where he perfected his fake Scottish accent and played Tig for 3 years. He has since worked with Anna Chancellor, Amanda Abbington and Jason Isaacs in projects including Shetland and Case Histories for BBC and has carved a successful niche playing either policemen or bad guys. As a writer, he just makes things up, but nobody seems to have noticed yet…
Before that, he studied English and Art History at St. Andrews University, so he prides himself on the fact that he has three degrees in waffling, colours and telling stories.
At Super Being, Ed is in charge of developing our use of the arts for social impact.
powers:branding . communications . digital strategy . humour . storytelling . Web Design . Writing
Joe has been a jack of all trades – writing, designing and airbrushing his way through life since leaving Falmouth Art School in 2002. He is drawn to anything that can be optimised in digital form, even his biography.
Before joining Super Being Labs, Joe worked for the Commonwealth Foundation for three years, managing their online communications. In 2012 he helped develop the cultural initiative, Commonwealth Writers by establishing an international network for emerging writers and relaunching the Commonwealth Short Story Prize.
He loves storytelling in all forms, and only moved to London to promote his first novel. Four years and three jobs later, he’s still procrastinating.
Joe can be found heading for the coast as soon as a weather warning is issued suggesting he shouldn’t. He has built yurts that occasionally still pop up unannounced in fields and festivals, and keeps one in the shed just in case somebody pulls the plug on the digital world.
powers:Design . Product Development . Web Development
Paul is a young technologist with an ambition to bring a change to the world status quo and improve the lives of people. Being around computers since a young age has sparked his interest for all things related to hardware and operating systems, on top of that, he is a programmer that did his first freelance gigs while still in high school.
Being very unconventional in regards to his education since a very young age, preferring to listen to history audio books than actually paying attention to his history teacher, he didn’t pursue a computer science degree but instead took the path of the autodidact.
When he isn’t glued to a computer screen, Paul spends his time listening to podcasts, his favorite being Hardcore History, trying to learn Swedish, and training his German Shepherds.
powers:animation . Design . Drawing . Graphic Design . Product Design . product innovation . storytelling . Web Design
Sigrid’s interest in visual arts began at a young age, so she started taking drawing lessons when she was 7 years old. After attending an Arts high school, feeling the need to explore the theoretical side, she went to study Art History. She then decided to focus on her practical skills and there began her journey with visual design, animation, 3D modeling, and product design. Now she’s at Super Being, using those skills to accelerate social good 🙂
In her free time, she enjoys traveling, drinking ridiculous amounts of coffee and collecting cats (yes, she loves cats).
powers:humour . Mobile Development . Product Development . Project Management . Web Development
With past careers in architecture and journalism, Kirsty has a range of project management and collaborative skills to offer alongside her technical prowess. An experienced Ruby on Rails and React Native developer, she is constantly seeking to expand upon her skills. She has even turned her hand to documentation engineering, having recently taken part in improving the official React Native documentation. Most recently working in Berlin in the veterinary technology industry, we’re lucky that Kirsty has returned home to London to be a part of the Super Being Labs team.
powers:animation . communications . Community Building . Design . Film Editing . Film Production . Product Development . product innovation . Research . service design . storytelling
Laura is a product designer with a background in therapeutic health and industrial design, crafting experiences with playfulness, empathy, and positivity. She’s an explorer who loves to sink teeth into exciting challenges and push past comfort zones. She’ll live out of her suitcase to find inspiration in travel, to go on whirlwind adventures, and to find the horizon. She walks at extreme speeds and goes where the wind blows. Only deep conversation and beer can stop her.
Join the Mission
Are you someone who gets stuck in, putting the job title second and the collective mission first? Do you laugh way more than you worry? Are you ready for a challenge? Do you like people? Do you like mangoes? Are you able to question things? If you answered ‘yes’ to all of those questions, then we want to meet you.
We do things differently at Super Being Labs:
- You can take as many holiday days as you want – with power comes great responsibility – we trust in teamwork.
- You can either take all of August or December off, fully paid.
- You can work from anywhere in the world.
- Find a creative way of getting in touch with us to find out number 4.
If we can help or you would just like to talk about anything then drop us an email at:
Call us on +44 07738 00 48 20 | Visit us at Runway East, 10 Finsbury Square, EC2A 1AF