Robert Camp: Workplace Transformation and the Next Generation Employee

Delving into the entrepreneurial spirit of the next generation, Robert Camp discusses how firms should harness this groups characteristics and considers ways to inspire and retain the best talent by asking…

What can professional service firms offer to entrepreneurial millennials?

“Attracting and retaining the best millennial talent is not just about having the right approach to technology. It is crucial to recognise and harness the entrepreneurial spirit of millennials too.”

With a recent survey finding that 30% of millennials aspire to start a business in their lifetime, and 14% intending to do so within the next five years*, this is a key challenge for professional services firms.

“The millennial generation is more open to entrepreneurialism, perhaps because it is so much more visible now through social media. For millennials working in professional services they are also likely to be acting for entrepreneurs their own age, which must have an impact on them,” says Robert Camp, Director of Strategic Innovation at South West law firm Stephens Scown LLP.

“The big question for professional services firms is: how do we harness this entrepreneurial spirit? And how do we retain the best talent by making careers with us more attractive than the lure of leaving to start their own business, or work for another entrepreneurial start up?”

Robert argues that it is crucial for professional services firms to create space to allow their people to engage in entrepreneurialism.

“Millennials want to work for organisations with a purpose they can identify with and it is important to give them a forum to share their ideas and, crucially to actually listen to their ideas and give feedback. As well as that you need to look out for projects that will excite and inspire them, beyond the usual day to day work they do for you,” says Robert.

Robert acknowledges that this is a particular challenge for mid-sized firms like his own, but feels it is not insurmountable.

“Last year we created nuBright, a joint venture with a technology company designed to deliver data protection and cyber security services. One of our talented young associates was involved in the planning stages and given the time and space to develop the strategy. He has now been given a place on the board of this new company. He is combining his work with nuBright, with his work as an associate in our intellectual property team,” says Robert.

The rewards of getting this right could be enormous according to Robert Camp.

“By giving your people an outlet for their entrepreneurialism you will earn their loyalty and keep them with your firm. Not only that; really listening to them will give you some great ideas that could improve your business in ways you haven’t thought of yet.”

Robert Camp is director of strategic innovation at Stephens Scown. To contact Robert, please call 01392 210700, email or visit

*Millennial Money Survey by F & C Investment Trust, which surveyed over 4,000 people aged 18-35.

Robert Camp

Robert Camp

Stephens Scown
Robert is a Strategic Innovation Director at Stephens Scown and is based in Exeter. Robert’s vision for the firm is simple – to provide excellent client service and to develop and play to everyone’s strengths – and he has looked beyond the legal sector in a bid to set the firm apart from their competitors. He qualified in November 1986 and attended Harvard Law School’s Leadership in Law course and enjoys leading and being responsible for setting and delivering innovation for the firm. Having worked in London, Hong Kong and Sydney, Robert has extensive national experience in the mining and minerals sector. Robert is a director and trustee of the Christian overseas and development charity Tearfund, a Board director of the Exeter Festival of South West Food and Drink, an elected member of the CBI Regional Council for the South West, an advisory Board member of Burcher Jennings and a director of the South West Tourism Alliance.