Own Goals

Maracana_Stadium_June_2013

The German football team put an enormous amount of hard work into their preparations for the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil. But they also knew why they were putting in the hours at the training ground. For the months leading up to the finals the team was greeted every day on arrival at their training ground by an enormous photograph of the Maracanã Stadium in Rio where the Final was to be played. They were working hard to achieve a clear goal……to get to the final and win…..which of course they did beating Argentina 1-0 in extra time.

My son George is just starting his GCSE year. Last week I went to his school for a briefing on study skills from an organisation called elevate Year 10 pupils were to have a longer workshop on the subject the following day. Elevate has carried out a study of pupils in 3 countries over a number of years, asking them about the methods they used while studying and when preparing for exams. They found an extremely high correlation between how well pupils performed and the study methods they used. The number one determinant of success was having a clear goal. The top performers didn’t just study hard or even SMARTly, they knew why they wanted to succeed in their studies. And the more that goal was one that they owned…..one they had arrived at for themselves……the better they did.

A 2007 Joseph Rowntree Foundation study found that satisfaction with social housing amongst those living in it was on the rise and that only a minority of social renters aspired to own their own home. Nevertheless only 8% of adults would choose to live in social housing and the number whose preference was home ownership was at an all time high of 84%. So there is a good chance that anyone fighting their way to the front of the social housing queue does not see this as something they would choose for themselves or their family.

Add to this the experience of ‘winning’ the keys to your social rented home. An endless round of questions, checks and probing by your prospective landlord to make sure you haven’t left a trail of rent arrears, property damage or ASB behind you at a previous address. By the time your housing officer has finally left you alone with your new home and has finished drumming into you all the things you mustn’t do, all the conditions you must keep and the consequences of getting either of them wrong, you could be forgiven for feeling…..well, pretty shell shocked.

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That’s why starting the relationship with our customers in a different place is at the heart of the Bromford Deal. Yes there are things we need to know about someone’s previous housing but we try and keep this as light touch as possible. Far more important than knowing where someone has come from is knowing where they want to get to. We want to know what our customers can do not what they can’t do. Before they decide whether a Bromford home is right for them we are very up front about the fact that we have high expectations of our customers and great belief in what they are capable of achieving.

We ask every customer what they think the Deal means and where they hope to be in a few months time. The results are pretty amazing…..and really not at all surprising.

It’s an opportunity to create a home whilst having the support and chance of self improvement.

The Deal is a great opportunity for tenants to achieve their goals in life.

Our customers have goals. Goals for themselves and their families. Goals that they own and are determined to achieve…..

I want to make a nice home….I want to enroll at college and further my education to create better prospects for my family.

I want to go out on my own…..go into town on the bus without having a panic attack…..do normal things.

I want to stay out of debt. I’ve told the Social I don’t need their loan any more and I’m looking forward to buying new bunk beds for my kids with my own money.

Bromford’s role is just to see if there is anything we can do to help our customers get there a little sooner.

Photo courtesy of the Brazilian Government

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