Lessons I Learned in Law

Alex Stephany on doing right and giving back

December 01, 2022 Heriot Brown Season 4 Episode 5
Alex Stephany on doing right and giving back
Lessons I Learned in Law
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Lessons I Learned in Law
Alex Stephany on doing right and giving back
Dec 01, 2022 Season 4 Episode 5
Heriot Brown

In this episode of Lessons I Learned in Law Scott Brown talks to Founder and CEO of Beam, Alex Stephany.  Launched in 2017, Beam is an innovative tech platform supporting homeless people and refugees into stable jobs and homes. Before launching Beam, Alex was CEO of JustPark where he led the largest ever crowdfunding round for a tech startup at the time.

Alex explains the mission behind Beam and what motivated him to start it. He also shares some of the lessons he learned in law including:

·      If you can, give back. 

·      Don’t underestimate the importance of attention to detail. 

·      Impress everyone. This is a small, interconnected world so try and do right by everyone you come across. 

An expert on the sharing economy, Alex is the author of The Business of Sharing.

Presented by Scott Brown of Heriot Brown Legal Recruitment

Follow Heriot Brown:

Twitter | LinkedInFacebook | Instagram

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode of Lessons I Learned in Law Scott Brown talks to Founder and CEO of Beam, Alex Stephany.  Launched in 2017, Beam is an innovative tech platform supporting homeless people and refugees into stable jobs and homes. Before launching Beam, Alex was CEO of JustPark where he led the largest ever crowdfunding round for a tech startup at the time.

Alex explains the mission behind Beam and what motivated him to start it. He also shares some of the lessons he learned in law including:

·      If you can, give back. 

·      Don’t underestimate the importance of attention to detail. 

·      Impress everyone. This is a small, interconnected world so try and do right by everyone you come across. 

An expert on the sharing economy, Alex is the author of The Business of Sharing.

Presented by Scott Brown of Heriot Brown Legal Recruitment

Follow Heriot Brown:

Twitter | LinkedInFacebook | Instagram

Scott Brown  (0:02)

Hi, I'm Scott Brown, thank you for tuning in to Lessons I Learned in Law, the podcast brought to you by Heriot Brown In-House Legal Recruitment. We are specialists in placing lawyers and fulfilling careers in-house. Each week on the podcast, I get to sit down with someone with a connection from the legal profession to talk through and hear about their top three lessons from their career. And I really hope that it will leave you inspired and energised. And this week, I really hope that you'll be left feeling that lawyers can do good as well. I'm honoured to be joined today by Alex Stephany, who is the founder and CEO of Beam. Hi, Alex. 


Alex Stephany  (0:38)

Hello, how you doing?


Scott Brown  (0:40)

Great. Thank you. Thanks for joining me today and taking time out of your busy schedule. For those of you that haven't heard about Beam, then this is your enlightenment moment and you can thank me for that later! Beam is an award winning tech for good platform that crowd funds employment training for homeless people and refugees by supporting them into stable jobs and homes. I'm really excited to hear more about that from Alex later. But since launching in 2017, Beam has raised more than 3.5 million in donations, and changing lives for more than 1000 people, and has won loads of accolades and awards along the way. I’ve stalked Alex for months to ask him to be a guest on the podcast for a couple of reasons. We're proud partners of Beam and I'm so happy that he's here to share more about their journey and the journey in his career. But a fact, I think he keeps to himself a little bit and has managed to keep it on the down-low, is that he's actually a qualified lawyer in a previous life. So Alex, great to have you today.


Alex Stephany  (1:36)  

Great to be here. I mean, I don't think I keep on the down-low, it's just a long time ago now. So, you know, I don't even know if I… can I even call myself a lawyer? I you know, think you'd have to have a practising certificate and that sort of thing to be qualified as a lawyer. But yeah, that was my first job out of university. So unfortunately, a while ago now,


Scott Brown  (1:57)

Yeah. Well, glad to hear it's not completely erased. Yeah, I'm sure it's taught you some things which we’re keen to hear about. But before we jump into your lessons, Alex, it'd be great if you could for the benefit of those who don't know about Beam, can you share a little bit about your mission?


Alex Stephany  (2:11)  

Sure. So we are transforming how the world supports those left behind through the power of people and technology. And so when we talk about people left behind, we're talking about people who are homeless, people who are refugees, people who've been in prison. And we're beginning to think about how we can support other groups like people with disabilities, to really fulfil their potential. And what that means in practice is we have two services, we have the jobs and Beam homes. And the jobs is obviously supporting people into stable jobs and Beam homes is supporting people into stable homes. So there's really foundational things that people need. And there have, of course, been many services that support people into jobs and homes for a really long time. But I think what is very different about Beam’s approach is that we are tackling these issues as a tech start-up, using a lot of technology, product and data. And using the kind of I guess, power of start-up culture, if you like that kind of an hierarchical idea. Friendly, experimental culture, to tackle these problems with hopefully some quite fresh eyes and an awful lot of passion. The way it works in practice is we partner with government, they refer people to the service, we give them a caseworker, we also make sure they have a phone, because this thing here is the you know, the greatest invention ever, to achieve social mobility and social justice, we give them a phone, and then we deliver services through that phone directly to them, supporting them into a job in a home way that the crowdfunding works is that there are obviously financial costs to this. So we go out to the public, both individual people and of course, firms like your own, and they can get involved by supporting people, that means funding what they need. It could be employment training, it could be a suit for a job, it could be a rental deposit to move into a home or a fridge for their new home. So the public gets involved and removes all these financial barriers and also sends us some messages of support. And in some ways, that's the kind of secret sauce behind all of this stuff. It's the fact that people are referred to our service who have been marginalised, net down struggling suffering for years, decades, sometimes their whole life. And suddenly they use a technology to connect with hundreds of people who actually care. And they remember that their lives have value and that can have a really transformative impact on people that can give them the confidence and the momentum to achieve things that they never thought possible.


Scott Brown  (4:49)

Amazing. I'd encourage anyone out there to check out the platform and the stories are and the way that you guys present that information to people on there is great. You can really feel, you feel a part of it, and you're helping you're really changing lives. And to be a part of that is, yeah, it's really inspirational from my side. I'm keen to hear as we as we go along, Alex, I'm sure we'll hear more around the inspiration and having set up being back in 2017 along the way, but we'll jump in, if you don't mind with your first lesson that you've learned in your, in your career will be that lore along the way.


Alex Stephany  (5:22)

So I think lesson one would probably be, if you can give back, if you have the ability, that opportunity, the privilege of being able to support others and give back, you should. And I think that is a responsibility and an obligation for the lucky few. And I was very lucky, in many ways growing up, and I think I was raised with those values. Both my parents are lawyers. And I think that the sense in my family's household growing up was like, we're all really lucky. We have food on the table, we have a roof above our heads, and many people don't. If you are in a fortunate position, you have an obligation to give back. And I think the legal profession has this incredible legacy of giving back and pro bono. And the legal profession should be really, really proud of that. It's taken seriously, by law firms, in a way that is just not in most sectors is the simple reality. You know, people lead from the top in law firms that pro bono and work that contributes positively to the communities in which they operate matters, and is not tokenistic. And since really the earliest days of Beam, we've been working with Herbert Smith Freehills, who've been supporting Beam on a pro bono basis, and have provided the most phenomenal support to Beam across many different functions of that law firm from, you know, tax to employee incentives to data and many others. And, you know, I'm so impressed by that commitment that runs through the firm to taking this stuff seriously in believing this stuff really matters. And, you know, I've spoken to, you know, be working with very junior trainees, and I'd be talking to the managing global partner, and everyone cares. And I think that that is very impressive. And I think the legal profession should be really proud of that. And one of the formative experiences in my life was when I was a trainee working at Clifford Chance, Clifford Chance had a partnership with a legal charity called lawful. And this legal charity gave advice to anyone about anything. It was incredibly open ended in its scope. And it was a convent. So as part of my training contract, and it was the last three months of my training contract, and after my training contract ended, actually stayed on at this firm, and it was a really formative experience for me, because I've grown up in London, but you know, growing up in a kind of, I guess, middle class, suburban area, and I was for three months, just coming very face to face with the same most extreme forms of poverty in London. And I had seen glimpses of that before in jobs I'd been doing and you know, I'll try and get out of my comfort zone and working in warehouses and things like that to earn money in summer holidays. No, it wasn't completely blanket, but I've seen people who are just struggling to survive, you know, I would remember these legal clinics would go in the morning. And there were just huge queues stretch around the building Scot of people who were waiting to get this free legal advice. And then they would have I think, 15 minutes, lots of me and I was, you know, this trainee lawyer who knew nothing about law still know nothing about law that you're nothing man as well. And people be coming in and you'd be speaking to people who weren't being, you know, who physically, you know, you know, risk were being abused or assaulted. The government was trying to deport them. They were, of course, completely penniless, had nowhere to go, didn't speak English, you know, health conditions. I'm just like, No, often, you would see people had many of these problems at once. And it was really tough to be given these 15 minute slots, trying to unpick someone who was being you know, pursued by violent debt collector, and had terrible health issues and all kinds of complex legal issues. And it was, I guess, the kind of experience it's hard to kind of go back from your light. Once you've seen that stuff. Once you've realised that there is so much poverty, and there are people who have such profound problems in one of the wealthiest cities in the world. It's quite hard to I see that stuff and unknown that stuff. And guess the other reflection left me with is I felt very powerless to actually help these people in a meaningful way. And I was continually thinking, we are actually getting to these people way too late and need to be way more upstream of these problems. And were smarter at stopping them kind of snowballing into these desperately sad situations, you know, scale, which they were. And I didn't really know what I could do to address that. I didn't know how I could help. And fast forward a few years, I had built and run a tech company called just park. And I learned the basics of how you build a company and build technology. And I guess then my thoughts began to turn back to all of the social impact work. And to think actually, what would happen if you took some of the things that people can do within technology, and you apply them to these problems, like homelessness, like the refugee crisis that have mostly been ignored by tech entrepreneurs and tech investors, the situation we're in today is that if you are a privileged person, like you are like me, we have wonderful technology that has cost billions of dollars to build and sits on our phone, and I can book a nice Airbnb or order some sushi to my desk in 15 minutes from delivery. And that's fine. But we have not put 1% of that TLC and human and financial capital into solving problems for people who really, really need help. And if you are a refugee who is sleeping rough on the streets of London tonight, this thing here is no use really, or very limited use. And if you're a single mom in emergency accommodation with young kids and modal overhauls this thing here is a very different use, unfortunately. And I think that's huge missed opportunity. And that's why one of the things I'm most excited about is how we are beginning to put products onto smartphones, that makes services accessible for people. 


Scott Brown  (12:11)

Yeah, it's amazing hearing all the stuff around the way back to that training those training contract days, and obviously was partly responsible for flicking a switch there in you. How's it feel in that situation? Where you do you feel powerless, with people coming to you, I guess what, what sort of things were you trying in those circumstances? And they were done pro bono stuff through a law firm, what was the advice from the armed?


Alex Stephany  (12:36)  

Yeah, I mean, within the very limited time I had, the goal was always just to try and understand what was happening. You know, you have 15 minutes to get your head around very complex situations. And you want to try and understand as much as you possibly can of these very complex situations in that time, and give people some basic common sense stairs. And that's very, very hard. With the time allowed, and there was such limited provision for people in those sorts of situations that the pressures and on those services were just out of sync with a capacity of people to deliver them. And of course, this is just wildly different from Clifford Chance versus being incredibly Junior role. And, you know, I might be, you know, the third person proofreading this one document on a team of 40. People wanted to, like, these were similar phenomenon that I mentioned, foreign technology is incredibly well resourced teams, incredibly well resourced legal problems that you know, we're working on, and that you have these very acute legal problems that were just have negligible results on them


Scott Brown  (13:51)

And yeah, puts things into perspective as to what was important when you're looking at a big long list of indemnities. And that will never transpire and the resource that's going there's going into that, but yeah, that's great to hear. It's been partly behind some of the stuff that you guys are doing so keen to ask Alex like now in your position, there must still be things that you see, you must see so much in and be exposed to so much hardship as well. Where are the biggest frustrations must be very frustrating in circumstances where it can't help everyone? I guess it's an impossible task.


Alex Stephany  (14:23)

I guess the main frustration is that for every one person, we help, there are hundreds of people that we can't and that just, you know, gives us the determination to make sure that we can keep growing and scaling and helping more people. And that I think keeps us humble as well. You know, my original goal when I started thinking about this, the homelessness problem and how I might be able to get involved or add some value was I just said to myself, I want to help 1000 homeless people get jobs. You know, my view is sometimes you just need to pick a number and go for it. And that's what I did. And I had no idea how I was going to do that. But I just picked that number. And then, you know, when was it sometime, I think in the spring, we surpassed that number, summer. And now, you know, of course, we set our sights higher now what I think about is, we need to actually really move the needle on these social problems. So we need to make sure that when there are graphs of social problems, and people in homeless hostels, and homeless children and all of these graphs, we need to make those graphs move in the right direction. And I think we can do it. And I think, if we keep executing well, and we stay focused, and we stay humble, and we hire great people, we should be able to see that in two to three years’ time in the UK that these problems are beginning to get solved by a tech start-up. And yeah, that's kind of the as you know, yourself, like that is the nature of running an organisation, you know, whether it's a company, or whether it's a non-profit, or whatever it is, like, you need to keep setting your sights higher, if you want to be successful. And, you know, of course, there's, I'm not achieve anything like these things single handedly I am, you know, will soon be 1% of headcount of the team with 70. Plus people today will probably be 100, by the end of January. So what that means is, you know, the more and more, I just need to think about what's the right strategic direction and work on the building a really, really strong culture. But we've come this far, because we have a really fantastic team of people who are smart, and committed and ambitious. And, you know, this is why, like, for me, it's very much a cliche of it's like, it's all about the team. Alex, Stephanie is never gonna make a difference to homelessness, but you know, Beam and the Beam team know, I hope well.


Scott Brown  (17:06)  

So we'll move on to lesson two.


Alex Stephany  (17:09)  

Sure, I think Lesson Two is quite simple lesson, which is just around attention to detail. So when I joined Clifford Chance, you know, I was just incredibly scruffy, disorganised chaotic student, my head was still in like, student zone. And even after two years of law school studying more grown up things, if you like, than studying poetry, like studying before, can we change that. And I think that, first that it grates on me a little bit how everything had to be just right going out the door. But it's actually a very useful thing to learn. And the training contract is kind of like a bootcamp in in like having high standards, having attention to detail. And I think that serves you really, really well, because you need to have an eye for the detail, I think, to be successful in any role. You need to know when that can become prohibitive, and when you need to think about the big picture. But, you know, one thing that you will consistently find with people who've been through legal training is that attention to detail, that thoroughness, that rigour. And so I think that was a thing that I've taken from it, like the importance of attention to detail, and how, you know, people can really get a lot out of, you know, the formal training that professionals can give people and, you know, though I don't really have a great deal of legal knowledge, I think the way in which your approach problems, the way in which you work and that kind of culture of excellence that you'll find in a really great firm, can, you know, teach any, any young person, especially a lot?


Scott Brown  (18:45)  

Yeah, it's a really good way of putting it, I think, gives you that rigour. How do you apply it? Now? I have spoken to a few people who say, like, knowing when it's good enough, I think versus that last 10% of making things perfect. How have you found that you've had to filter or different way and forget that training?


Alex Stephany  (19:04)  

Yeah, I think you know, you always need to think about the impact of the actual work. So Tech has lots of good kind of prioritisation frameworks that called the ice framework for rice framework. You know, often there's a sort of a, you can do a two way to where you're kind of prioritising kind of impact against ease or effort and things like that. So there has to be thinking about like, what is the impact what is the value in this incremental time or work? But also, you know, you need to also think that like standards of excellence are set by people at the top, often in organisations, and that if someone who is running an organisation says seven out of 10 is good enough, and someone they're managing says six out of 10 is good enough and someone they're managing thinks five out of 10 is good enough. When probably an organisation paying five out of 10 work out is not going to be particularly successful. If the past few For the top session, we want things to be eight or nine out of 10 consistently, and they explain to people below them why that is important and necessary. And that becomes part of the culture of excellence, then I think organisations are going to be more likely to succeed. So, some of these things are kind of worth the extra effort because of what they say, and how they forge a culture. So you know, if a logo is like, you know, in a crazy not centralised place on a slide deck, that has minimal impact, you know, that has minimal practical impact at all. But that has a cultural impact as well, because what that says to everyone looks at it, whether internal or external, or is this is a culture where it's okay to be sloppy. And that has, I think, a really, a really big price.


Scott Brown  (20:48)  

Very good point. When you speak to lawyers all the time that are unfulfilled or not sort of getting their energy from working in the profession, and perhaps having ideas about leaving the profession, but maybe not having a framework or an idea as to how to do it. How did you take that step away from the corporate or the corporate world into tech? And what was your journey there?


Alex Stephany  (21:11)  

To be honest, Scott, the answer is very simple, which is that I was a really bad lawyer. So probably one of the worst trainees in the history of Clifford Chance, it really wasn't playing to my strengths. And in that sense, I was lucky because I had my choice made for me. I mean, I remember kind of just seeing everyone doing better than me. But at the same time, I also remember when it came to some tasks, like when we you know, occasionally when they, you know, would sit around, do some kind of idea generation type work I was I was generally better than other people. But that was, you know, a few percent of the job, day to day, there are other people who were just so consistently better than me. And so I just thought, Maybe this isn't for me. And I kind of wanted to be, I wanted to see that I could reach the top or close the top of, you know, whatever I was working on. And it was just really quickly obvious to me that that wouldn't be the case. So, you know, I was like, I think it's harder for people who, you know, maybe they're not enjoying a role, whether it's law or whatever it is, but they're just very well suited to it. That's really hard. Because it can, you know, they're being hugely successful, they're being promoted that blah, blah, blah. That was never an option for me. But I didn't think I would ever have been able to become a partner in a top firm. I just don't think my brain is wired that way. So you know, I was, I think I was lucky.


Scott Brown  (22:37)  

Yeah, that was I was who I felt very much the same. I just didn't, I couldn't see a route to that. Success. And yeah, almost fell. Yeah, donor has almost felt like a bit of a failure as a lawyer, but Eric just being on another podcast a while ago around getting energy from and ability to work longer hours on stuff that you're energised by, and the work that you're doing now, clearly, versus the sort of working in a job where that culture persists.


Alex Stephany  (23:04)  

Yeah, I think that's true. My experience has been, you need to find work that aligns with your values and gives you energy. And I think there's, you know, very common conversation. Now around, you know, about work life balance, and work life balance is very important. But what it misses out is that work is not equal, there is work that really can impair and negatively impact your mental health, your physical health, and there is work that is rewarding is meaningful, enhances your life, and gives you energy. And if you can find that work, as I have been lucky enough to find them, you're in a very lucky position. But, you know, am I doing better and more happy on a day to day basis, but you know, working really hard, doing what I do, versus working 10 to 4pm doing something that saps my spirit 100 times over. So yeah, I think you know, that's something that sometimes is missing from this work life balance debate is that it is a good thing if you find work you're passionate about. And if you find what you're passionate about, and aligns your values and gives you energy and you're working hard, then I think that's a great thing, actually. And you know, that's how a lot of progress happens in the world. It's that alignment between people's passions and their get they are doing work that they're passionate about. Of course, like there are limits to that. You don't want to be you know, working constantly and you know, to the detriment of your health. Even if you do find that but you know, I It is common for me to work very long day at the end the day just full of energy.


Scott Brown  (24:45)  

Good. It doesn't feel like work when you're that passionate about it. And that's the absolute that's the secret sauce. I'm really keen to hear your thoughts on Patagonia and their latest has been in the news around the trust. What are your as another organisation that's doing good. What are your thoughts on that move?


Alex Stephany  (25:05)  

Yeah, I mean, I guess just segwaying from what you're saying, you know, like, if you can find work, it doesn't feel like work. I mean, that was, like, Eve showing up. That was his shtick. That was his whole thing when he was building a business. It’s just like, why can't work be a group of people having fun, working hard, but just building stuff they want to build and living the lifestyle that they want to. They want to have and so this was a kind of unintentional challenge to corporate America where a group of kind of renegades us, okay, yeah, sure, we will work when you want to work and we'll go surfing we will reset from will be free, but we will we have we are driven by passion, not driven by the stick of the corporate boss, saying you must be in this office, and you must wear these this suit. And you must do that. And of course, like by tapping into the passion of people, he's built this most phenomenal, hugely successful, profitable, large business and an incredible brand. And I think that the reason they have been so successful is because they have taken their values and culture seriously, consistently. And they have therefore, built a brand, that means something and that people admire. And you know what he did the other day, by transferring ownership to a trust that will essentially put Patagonia's profits to work on environmental and ecological projects forever, is, I think it's just kind of almost lost for words. You know, it's just wherever the social impact or environmental impact equivalent is, like playing an absolute blinder in a way that almost maybe no one ever has before. And no part of that was keeping the business private, and retaining control. But I mean, I think also part of it was being prepared to be slow. You know, I think the tech industry has this obsession with speed and you know, making money quickly, it's one reason why people in tech love crypto, and actually getting a business from nothing to a listed business in five or seven years, it might be, you know, wonderful fantasy for venture capitalists, but I think you really build many enduring great organisations in such a short period of time. And what he has built with Patagonia is a truly enduring organisation. And I think that company will be thriving, certainly in 20 years’ time, almost certainly, I think, in 50 or 100 years’ time, in a way that very few fashion brands will. So what an incredible achievement, and I think, you know, building, you know, companies are, I think, a little bit like, buildings, you know, you can bang up in five years, but that building will not last. But if you build it with real care, real attention to detail to talking about before, real passion, you build it, right? You know, like the Romans, they built their buildings, right, go stand under the dome of the Pantheon in Rome, you know, those buildings can last 1000 years or 1000s of years. And I do worry at times today that we treat companies and organisations in general a bit like buildings, and we just throw them up. And then we're surprised that they're not values driven, or they don't stand the test of time, or they don't treat their employees properly, or they cause pollution and environmental Carnage and all these other things. And I think sometimes you've just got to be prepared to be a little bit more patient. Yeah. And, you know, the approach of Beam has been we're going to build the organisation at the right speed, we're going to go at a good rate, because we have big problems that we need to, you know, we need to solve reasonably quickly because there are millions of people who are suffering, but we're going to try and do that all sustainably.


Scott Brown  (29:16)  

Yeah. And I think that for me, the really impressive thing about, looking at Beam, it's the numbers obviously, that you're that you're impacting and helping, but it's the retention, the helping people into jobs, but it lasting. And the percentages that are in and not and supported on an ongoing basis by the caseworkers is fantastic. And in that sustainability piece.


We'll move on to lesson three


Alex Stephany  (29:50)  

Lesson three, which is, I remember someone who was in charge of litigation at Clifford Chance just had this motto that he used a few times and for some reason it stuck with me. His name was I think, Simon Davies. And I remember him saying “impress everyone”. And that just sounded like a really ridiculous, strange thing when I first heard it, but I think it has just somehow kind of burned itself into my brain. And I think it's a bit similar to kind of just do the right thing by everyone. You know, this is a small, interconnected world. And it's a really, really high yardstick, and it's really, really ambitious, but, you know, impress, and impress everyone and treat people well. And you know, whether that is some, you know, quote unquote, important person, or whether that is someone who, you know, is, quote, unquote, a less important person, and they are, you know, the, the office cleaner, or they're the receptionist or their Uber driver. And, you know, these are really hard things, because we will come into contact with hundreds of people on a daily basis, often. But I think that, that is something that I try and live. I certainly, you know, often cook things up, and I often don't impress people, but I think that is an aspiration that is about really taking pride in how you interact with people and how you treat people. And I think that, you know, that's another thing that like, the legal profession does, well, it's like, people take pride in their work. And, you know, that's the thing that probably lawyers take for granted. But in most companies in most sectors, that probably isn't true.


Scott Brown  (31:33)  

Yeah, I think it's great value. Great lesson from Simon there, Clifford Chance, it's nothing so important as you never, you never know, the connections that come of that as well. But just doing it for treating everyone treating everyone on an even keel is, is great. So thank you for sharing the lessons, Alex, we're running out of time and don't want to keep you too long. But what can lawyers and law firms do to help Beam and help the mission, what can people out there, or listeners, as an individual, perhaps do to support you guys,


Alex Stephany  (32:06)  

everyone, if you're listening to this, please go to the website and just have a look around. It's a very easy website to remember, it's Beam.org. And there's a few different ways that you can get involved. So you can do fundraisers, like Heriot Brown have done. It's very simple, you know the drill, you start a fundraiser, you put a target to pass the link round. What's really cool about raising funds through Beam is that it's a 100% giving model, where every penny is removing the financial barriers that people are facing. And also, on that fundraiser, as that money is distributed to people using the Beam platform, you can actually see those individuals on the fundraising page, and you can read their stories, and you can see exactly where the money's going on their budget. So it's very efficient. And it's very transparent. There's also a feature we have called gift cards, where you can actually gift a donation to someone else. So if you are running a law firm or your partner in a law firm, when people join your firm, you can actually say we care about social mobility, and we've given you a little welcome present. And here is a 20 pounds or whatever donation that you can go to the website and you can actually apply to someone's campaign and invest in someone's future. And those also really popular over the Christmas period. So instead of people sending out lots of Christmas emails that, you know, let's face it aren't always wanted, we will get plenty of them already actually sending a Christmas email with some meaning and some impact where someone can get the email and they can get a little gift card and they can help someone. So those would be some of the some of the ways that law firms can get involved. We are also soon going to be bringing out some, I think, really exciting new technology that will allow law firms to track and other companies to track their impact much better to get involved with volunteering, and all kinds of other exciting things which we're going to be working on for the rest of this quarter and should be coming soon.


Scott Brown  (34:11)  

Sounds great. I was going to I was going to ask around the volunteering piece because I imagine that was fairly disrupted over the last the last couple of years. So great to hear that that's on the on the agenda as well. Well, yeah. If anyone wants to hear more about you guys and follow and track their company follow on LinkedIn and is there anywhere else that they can they can keep up to date with everything that's going on?


Alex Stephany  (34:33)  

Yeah. So on LinkedIn and all the social channels, we're just @WeAreBeam.


Scott Brown  (34:37)  

Awesome. We'll share those links in the in the podcast bio. But thank you very much, Alex. It's been great to have you join us today and look forward to Beam’s success and we look forward to help doing a little bit.


Alex Stephany  (34:49)  

Thanks so much. Have a great day.


Scott Brown  (34:53)  

Thanks so much, Alex. It's been great to hear your lessons and thanks for sharing so much information about Beam and its mission. It's really inspiring what you guys do, and everyone in the legal profession, myself and everyone at Heriot Brown, we're all rooting for you at Beam, and wishing you all the success and continued success in the future. And guys, if that hasn't left you feeling inspired and a love for what the legal profession can do, I loved hearing about Alex's pro bono experience when he was at Clifford Chance, really rung a chord and people should be proud of what lawyers do in that space. But if it doesn't leave you inspired, then I'm not sure what will. Heriot Brown has been a proud partner of Beam for over a year now. And as we said on the podcast, we gift card for every placement that we make, we make a donation to Beam. As we mentioned, whilst speaking to Alex, Heriot Brown has been a proud partner of Beam for over a year now. And it's no surprise to us that we see them going from strength to strength, and winning so many awards. They're having a great impact on social mobility and thinking about a lot of problems that exist in our society today. So we're very fortunate to have heard that and we are all in a very fortunate position. So I hope you can check them out at Beam.org and give them a following and some support. We're delighted to be getting the wheels in motion and organising our second Annual General Counsel Burns Night which takes place in January 2023. All proceeds from the event will go straight to Beam. To find out more about the event, drop us an email at burnsnight@heriotbrown.com or drop my colleague Emma Bower a message on LinkedIn or an email at emma@heriotbrown.com. We'd love to see as many of you there as possible. If you've enjoyed today's conversation, then please go back and check out some of our previous guests in series gone by, there are some amazing lessons shared and lots of inspiration from there. You can search for all the episodes in previous series on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and all those other good listening platforms or head over to heriotbrown.com/podcast. If you've got any feedback or you'd like to appear on the podcast as a guest, then drop me a line at scott@heriotbrown.com or come and connect with me or Heriot Brown on LinkedIn. Thank you for listening. See you next time.