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So, how does a chemist turned corporate lawyer become a startup founder? Working with social enterprises at Hogan Lovells was a critical factor in helping me to evaluate my priorities and what my next step should look like.
I joined Hogan Lovells as a trainee and almost immediately jumped at the opportunity to work with a start-up social enterprise, GiveMeTap (GiveMeTap's mission is to improve access to free drinking water in the developed and developing world). The experience of working with GiveMeTap and a number of other social enterprises was formative. I gained first-hand experience advising businesses that had a focused, social mission at the heart of their business objectives. I learnt that prioritising a purpose beyond profit generation helps businesses foster values, stakeholder relationships, incentives, behaviours and, taken together, a culture that drives superior value creation. I also came to realise that I am passionate about businesses that have at their heart a fundamental desire to help people make smart choices and to live happy, healthy, fulfilled lives.
By the time I was almost three years qualified I knew that I wouldn't be content until I had tried to launch a business of my own - one that was squarely aligned with my values. Healthcare seemed like a great place to start. We are in the midst of a healthcare crisis in the UK with an ageing demographic, increasing morbidity from chronic, preventable diseases and a medical fraternity that's demoralised by the incessant deluge of negative press and squeezed budgets. A fresh approach to healthcare, and in particular primary care, is needed. That's why I got together with a team of medics to launch iPrimary Care. We are one of the UK's first virtual-first medical practices. We have placed evidence based, proactive care at the core of our business. We're leveraging technology and a novel operating model to try and change the way people think about, understand and manage their health. We're lowering the barriers to accessing specialist advice that covers the entire spectrum of wellness optimization with the goal of creating a culture of prevention-first, proactive healthcare -- a difficult but worthwhile challenge!
Rob Stevenson - iPrimary Care