How Many Finance Professionals Does It Take To Frame A House?
“A house is to a family what soil is to a plant. A plant needs to be rooted. A family is like that. If a family is not rooted, it will not flourish. But once a family is well rooted, all kinds of wonderful things will begin to happen.”
These words from Habitat for Humanity cofounder Millard Fuller are troubling when you consider how many families lack good “soil.” According to a 2014 MacArthur Foundation survey, 47% of adults experience insecure or unstable housing at some point in their lives. And unfortunately, research bears out Fuller’s assessment of the consequences. Frequent school changes have been associated with lower math scores and increased behavior and attention problems in low-income students. And children from poorer quality homes have been found to experience greater emotional and behavior problems, as well as lower reading and math scores on standardized tests.
The good news? Habitat KC is doing something about it and allowed us to partner with them last month in their mission to ensure that everyone has a decent place to live. For one day, we traded private equity for sweat equity, conference rooms for construction sites, and PowerPoints for power tools for a chance to be a small part of helping Regina Murphy and Rosa Fergoso realize their dreams of homeownership. What an incredible honor.
But homes weren’t the only structures we worked on building that day. We believe that, like a family, the GRC team needs good “soil” to flourish. Except in our case, soil isn’t a home—it’s unity. To this end, Habitat KC provided us with a True Colors certified facilitator who led us in activities throughout the day that helped us learn more about ourselves and our colleagues. We’ve brought these newly acquired skills back to the office and are already seeing positive changes in the way we communicate with and relate to one another.
Just like Rosa and Regina’s homes will require regular maintenance, we know team unity is an ever-moving target. I’d love to hear about any methods you’ve seen work particularly well (or spectacularly poorly)–especially if you’ve tried the True Colors program.
And if you’d like to learn more about Habitat for Humanity’s team build days, please reach out. For the record, it took 12 finance professionals to frame two houses. If we can do it, so can you.
About Great Range Capital
Great Range Capital is a private equity firm based in greater Kansas City. It primarily targets controlling equity investments in companies with revenues ranging from $10 to $150 million that are based in Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. Learn more at www.greatrangecapital.com.