Home Group's past, present, and future

November 16th, 2017 in From www.athomewithmark.org

Before joining Home Group in 2008, I'd ran my own business, was a director of One North East — a regional development agency — and filled the role of chief executive of a local authority.

Not a straightforward route into housing, but one that gives me wider insight - something that's been really helpful as the sector continues to change around us.

When I joined the sector, the housing model was very traditional. It was slow in terms of achieving change and not hugely responsive to the market. The customer was not terribly well understood at that time.

That said, social housing has always remained true to its roots, despite significant political challenges. The social purpose that lies at the heart of housing, coupled with the passion within the sector, created a drive to improve. When I joined the sector, there were definite steps towards improved commercial thinking and looking beyond housing to find new ways of doing things.

At the time, I recall Inside Housing — the sector’s key publication –predicting that I wouldn’t last three months because I had come from outside of the sector. But the need for a new approach meant that more of us ‘outsiders’ were being welcomed into the fold and, almost a decade later, I’m still here.

For more on where Home Group’s been, and where we want to go in the future, take a look at my recent feature in The North East Times