Management and Leadership Cortnie Edwards MGT/330 December 19, 2011 Alecia Cummings Management and Leadership Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1976 by Millard and Linda Fuller. The couple had a dream of following their Christian lifestyle and helping others in need. They wanted to help families living in poverty and build new homes. The idea was they would build housed with no profit and charge no interest. “The concept that grew into Habitat for Humanity International was born at Koinonia Farm, a small, interracial, Christian farming community founded in 1942 outside of Americus, Ga. , by farmer and biblical scholar Clarence Jordan.
Building would be financed by a revolving Fund for Humanity. The fund’s money would come from the new homeowners’ house payments, donations and no-interest loans provided by supporters and money earned by fund-raising activities. The monies in the Fund for Humanity would be used to build more houses” (“Thrivent Builds With Habitat For Humanity “, 2011). The organization took off with unbelievable results. The Fullers took their organization internationally and have now since built over 400,000 homes. Leading and managing an organization such as Habitat for Humanity involves a multitude of diverse ideas, visions, and people. What is the difference between management and leadership? It is a question that has been asked more than once and also answered in different ways. The biggest difference between managers and leaders is the way they motivate the people who work or follow them, and this sets the tone for most other aspects of what they do” (“Leadership Vs. Management”, 2002-2011). Habitat for Humanity starts with the board of directors. Habitat for Humanity International board members oversee the direction of Habitat’s activities worldwide as the organization works to eradicate substandard housing.
Directors are elected to two-year terms that may be renewed four times. They receive no compensation for their voluntary service. The board of directors is responsible for affiliate policies and procedures, program development, financial stewardship, supervision of volunteer staff, fundraising, public relations, and legal matters. There are global directors that “represent the Asia-Pacific region in the global Habitat communications team in the creation and implementation of worldwide brand building, marketing and advocacy initiatives and campaigns.
This includes devising Asia-Pacific roll-out strategies; liaising and sharing with peers in other Habitat regions; and coordinating and collaborating with the HQ communications team on global strategies and initiatives” (“Alertnet”, 2011). The organization is made up mostly of volunteers and describes different levels among the organization as committees. The development, site selection, and public relations committees are just a few of the different leadership levels Habitat for Humanity has. The development committee is responsible for raising funds and for introducing people to our work.
This committee is also responsible for special events and outreach to businesses. The site selection committee works with town officials and developers to identifying and evaluating potential sites for new Habitat homes. This committee is always looking for new members with insight into the local real estate market and the inner workings of town government. The public relations committee is responsible for raising awareness of Habitat for Humanity in our service area. Responsibilities include media relations and publishing a quarterly newsletter.
In a non-profit organization there is often very little direction offered to volunteers, leaving them with many decisions to be made on their own. There is a lot of focus on the bigger picture, which in this case is to provide as many families as possible with shelter. However, the steps to achieving the overall goals or mission are not as clearly defined as would be in a profit-seeking company. According to the McKinsey Capacity Assessment Grid, Habitat for Humanity exemplifies effective governance.
This offers a competitive advantage because the managers’ decisions are aligned with the stakeholders’ interests since the managers may very well be shareholders themselves. The managers definitely devote their time and energy to improve the financial position of the organization so that it can offer assistance to those that require it the most. Habitat for Humanity is such a large organization; it is broken up into chapters, representing different regions of the world. Each chapter consists of different levels of leaders. At the top of the chain is the President. The President is esponsible for setting and distributing agendas for meetings, setting and distributing calendars of events, maintaining a working relationship with the local affiliate, coordinating an open communication with the Office of Student Activities, and keeping chapter focused on its goals. The vice president follows. His responsibilities consist of serving as project manager of chapter build, serving as chapter chaplain, keeping an open communication with the Construction and Horticulture Club, and overseeing family liaison, volunteer coordinator, superintendents, and tools management.
Family liaison pursues a relationship with the family that they are building for. They also keep all other members informed of the family’s needs. Brainstorms ideas for gifts to family, plans family gatherings, and makes scrapbooks for the family. Volunteer Coordinators are responsible for keeping track of the number of volunteers designated for the build days. Tools management maintains volunteers on the work site through a sign in/out sheet. They may also assign designated tools to each volunteer as needed through sign in/out sheet.
Superintendents maintain a close relationship with the VP during the build day. They will often be one of the most experienced on site and will help the Project Manager decide how to go about construction. They may also help educate and designate groups through construction. “The ability to implement strategies in an organization is one of the most skillful managerial requirements and knowledge that we need in critical aspects to run an organization” (“Strategies That Organizational Managers and Leaders Can Use to Create and Maintain a Healthy “, 2011). Leaders and managers in an organization can use some factors to create a healthy organizational culture, such factors are social factors, physical setting, technology, organizing arrangements and individual behavior. Leaders and managers are required to have increased resources, perceptive knowledge, and superior talent and enhanced capabilities to continue facilitating processes toward attaining the ultimate objectives, discovering and commercializing safety of the organization.
These multiple activities require managers and leaders who have the significant of strategies implementation and core competencies and organizational capabilities that create values to changes of the organization” (“Strategies That Organizational Managers And Leaders Can Use To Create And Maintain A Healthy”, 2011). A strategy is something an organization uses to help it reach its vision and mission. Habitat for Humanity’s global strategy, asks what markets it should be operating in. As a resource based organization, however, this question is less important.
The organization is not looking for opportunities to enter new industries and therefore develop new competencies. Rather, it is looking for ways to use its internal strengths and competencies in the market place. Habitat has chosen a global strategy that has them participating only in one type of non-profit industry – mainly the zero-interest mortgage and home building market. If they were to diversify into other non-profit markets such as non-perishable foods for example, the organization’s few resources may become too spread out and its core competencies would be stretched rendering all activities less effective.
If there was a business-level strategy category for Habitat for Humanity, it would definitely have to be one of cost leadership. The land, supplies, and labor are all acquired at low cost or free of charge. This strategy requires a centralized functional structure so that there can be higher rates of efficiency and better methods of meeting the objectives determined. Habitat incorporates this strategy through and through although its focus is on increasing efficiency so that more families can be helped – not to increase profits.
Adapting to different cultures, religions, languages, and people are just a few obstacles volunteers face when working with the globalization within Habitat for Humanity. Globalization makes a huge impact on volunteers. The United Nations has designated the first Monday in October as annual World Habitat Day. According to Habitat International, World Habitat Day’s purpose is to call attention to the current global state of the human habitat and push toward adequate housing for all. By raising awareness and advocating for universal decent housing the systems that reinforce and entrench poverty housing can be altered and even changed.
Habitat builds dignity through providing a shelter bringing a family closer together, it builds relationships throughout the world, and it builds community. Habitat for Humanity does all of this through globalization. They are helping people all over the world helping people become part of the globalization. Sustainability and Green building are two ways that Habitat is addressing globalization issues. Based on the research I have done on this organization, I found that there are a couple of strategies the organization an use to help obtain more volunteers and build credibility. The first option is partnering up with more trade schools. Students would be able to obtain hands-on experience and at the same time have the opportunity to add valuable volunteer hours to their resume. It would build a lifelong relationship with the institutions in addition to securing help and perhaps setting the tone for students to keep volunteering after graduation. The second strategy would be to obtain a Better Business Bureau Charity Seal to gain credibility.
Obtaining a Better Business Bureau Charity Seal would allow Habitat for Humanity to gain credibility in addition to getting more recognition. A lot of community members look to the Better Business Bureau when making decisions as to which businesses to get involved with or which charities to donate to. There may be people that have not heard of Habitat for Humanity but may learn about the organization through the BBB Website. Joining forces with and obtaining recognition from organizations such as the Better Business Bureau could benefit Habitat for Humanity by providing them with the opportunity to acquire even more volunteers.
As with any company or organization, there are always opportunities and risks involved. Making the best decisions for the families that are in need is the only way for Habitat to continue with their success. Strong leadership and management will continue to help the organization prosper. Many of the leaders of Habitat had to overcome their own struggles to get where they are today driving them to make the issue of poverty so much more of a priority. Skill, hard work, and their belief in living out God’s word have built this organization to where it is today.
References Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity. (2011). Retrieved from http://www. thriventbuilds. com/partnership/habitat/history. html Leadership vs. Management. (2002-2011). Retrieved from http://changingminds. org/disciplines/leadership/articles/manager_leader. htm Alertnet. (2011). Retrieved from http://www. trust. org/alertnet/jobs/2011-08-26-1458/ http://www. articleclick. com/Article/Strategies-That-Organizational-Managers-and-Leaders-Can-Use-to-Create-and-Maintain-a-Healthy/997166