OBV Profile: Mia Morris

Morris is the founder of the award winning Well Placed Consultancy. For the past seven years the company has conducted varieties of research, training, development and event management for the benefit of individuals, social groups and government departments like the London Regional Transport (LRT).

The consultancy, regarded as a company with corporate social responsibility, also acts as an umbrella business which operates online websites in relation to International Women's Month and Black History Month.

She describes them as: "premier independent portals, one stop shops to find specific information, related organisations as well as national and international stories." Morris believes that this is bridging together grass roots organisations with a global interest.

In collaboration with an organisation called SMAART, Morris launched the newspaper 'Black History 365' to coincide with Black History Month in October this year. She already has plans to make it a monthly publication and perhaps even global.

Morris, of Grenadian parentage, was born during the 1950s. She grew up in a part of Hackney which had a predominately Jewish community. She says: "Caribbean and Jewish people lived alongside each other because we all had similar experiences like the discrimination we faced coming to live and work in a place where people were weary of us."

Her parents were very much forward thinkers and made sure that during her formative years they encouraged her to read and also discuss topical issues, plans and ideas. Morris adds: "My entrepreneurial spirit comes from my family lineage. My father was a tailor and my mother a trained hairdresser."

After completing her secondary school education she went straight into work, while at the same time attending evening classes to further her education.

Morris says her career path was and still is eclectic. She's worked for a music merchandise company who represented stars including Shirley Bassey and Tom Jones. She says that she originally decided to train as a teacher at South Bank College but decided to leave the course because she knew that it was not for her. However she always felt that she wanted to do something where she could work with people.

She made the move to get involved in a number of youth training schemes addressing certain issues for example asking why young Black people were not able to get into mainstream business programmes initiated by companies like HSBC Bank and the London Stock exchange.

During the 1990s she landed a project manager role at TS2K, a training organisation for people in media and new media. As project manager, she arranged and implemented a work experience programme for young people to gain experience with media companies like the BBC, Channel 4 and others.

Her decision to leave TS2K is really where her entrepreneurial career began and in the late 1990s she launched Well Placed Consultancy. Since its inception the consultancy has won an award from the Home Office for its work with community groups.

Morris believes that the award is acknowledgement that she is doing something of substance in the community. For the future she says she wants to see Well Placed Consultancy grow from strength to strength and she also wants to continue the valuable work she is doing for her community.

She adds: "I'm a renaissance person, I've had a challenging life so far and I see my main success is surviving. I want to continue seeing everyday as a gift and opportunity."