The Futures Housing Group Board is keen to raise its profile within the business over the next 12 months and get to know the people who make the organisation tick.
NAME: Steve Hale
WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSION? I am a quantity surveyor by training and a member of the Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors. I have thoroughly enjoyed my 30 plus years in construction, working on a wide range of projects. For the last 14 years I have been working in affordable/social housing and have held director roles at Lovell Partnerships and Nottingham City Homes. Since May 2016, I have been working as a consultant in the affordable housing sector
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A BOARD DIRECTOR AT FUTURES? I joined the Board in June 2015. When I worked for Lovell, I won and delivered work for Amber Valley Borough Council and delivered the Group's first new build schemes so I go a long way back with Futures!
WHAT IS YOUR ROLE ON THE BOARD? I am a Board Director but also Chair of the Asset Investment and Limehouse Board. My role specifically aims to bring asset investment and new build housing areas for Futures.
Futures was very keen to get someone on board with new build experience to help it deliver the ambition to build more than 1,000 homes by 2020. The restructure, the formation of Limehouse to deliver private rented and outright sale homes and recruiting experienced development people like Alan Boucker and Helen Brown have put us in a robust position.
What I love is that Futures is serious about developing and has been ahead of the curve in getting it moving. I think other housing associations may struggle because they are not moving to change in the same way. I believe we have got it about right.
WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO BECOME A BOARD DIRECTOR AT FUTURES? When I was a contractor, Futures was always a strong client which kept me on my toes. I was impressed with the professionalism, reputation and vision of the organisation. When I found out about the role, I was really excited to go for it. I was impressed by the fact Futures was looking to expand.
WHAT IS THE BIGGEST CHANGE YOU'VE SEEN SINCE BEING WITH FUTURES? Undoubtedly, the introduction of Our Futures Way is the biggest change I’ve seen. But the restructure and positioning Futures for the future have also made a huge impact on the direction of the business.
While I do not underestimate the impact these things have, they are absolutely the right thing to do to help us grow. There is great commitment from the Board and Executive and with a number of new appointments, the Board has grown in confidence with a variety of skills and expertise which can only benefit Futures.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR TIME AT FUTURES? The highlight so far has been the formation of Limehouse which sends out a serious message to the market that we have a commitment to developing quality, new homes for a wide range of customers.
WHAT EXCITES YOU MOST ABOUT THE NEXT 10 YEARS FOR FUTURES? The development programme has to be up there, but there is a massive opportunity for us, and other high performing housing associations, to be the responsible face of a large private rented sector.
WHAT IS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE FACING FUTURES OVER THE NEXT 10 YEARS? The demonisation of affordable housing and proving the value for money our sector offers are the biggest challenges. Our other significant challenge is being able to grow as an organisation into our other target markets - which is absolutely crucial. Finally, I would say another challenge is maintaining our culture while continuing to develop our talent and resources to be able to meet our aspirations.
AWAY FROM FUTURES, WHAT IS YOUR PASSION IN LIFE? My passion in life is music and has been for years. I’m lead singer in a covers band called Fraud Squad although we play our final gig on 27th May 2017 at the Nottingham Boat Club on Trentside North, Nottingham. My favourite bands are The Beat and Bruce Springsteen.
My other passion is the ongoing commitment to the SANDS still-birth charity which I was chair of. My second son was still born so I have done much to promote and lobby on behalf of the charity.