My blog on jargon in UK housing generated a great response and was my most popular post of last year.
I’ve not had time until recently to follow through on my promise to turn the feedback into an online resource. Today’s Twitter discussions about the importance of having a shared narrative and housing ‘owning our future’ (or #OOF) makes this a timely post.
I'm at #NHFcomms16 this morning. If we are to own our future, comms professionals are vital. It starts today
I was with comms colleagues who work for providers across the South West, talking about how digital media can be used to build stronger relationships with key stakeholders, make transactions more efficient and cost effective and convey messages to a wider, more significant audience. More than anything, social media can be used to achieve the ‘gold standard’ of two-way communications, where organisations listen and respond to what they are hearing in a way that satisfies their audiences, and ultimately supports their business.
The publication of the housing strategy has led to some interesting headlines over the weekend, which I thought I’d share below. Notwithstanding the complexity of the issues around housing in this country, it’s interesting to see how different media treat the same information.
The Guardianplayed it straight on Friday with a piece setting out plans to use brownfield sites to deliver 450,000 new homes. It also highlighted a Government-backed mortgage scheme which would help first time buyers struggling to access finance get on the housing ladder.
The Telegraph, meanwhile, yesterday wrote of plans to double the right to buy discount offered to council house tenants, to up to 50% of the value of their home, with receipts being used to build replacements.
I’ve blogged before about suggestions that the Big Society is failing to cut through public confusion and apathy. Surveys have revealed that most people do not understand it, leaving those responsible for delivering the vision with a major challenge.
“People are not clear on what the big society is. Our polling found that 78% of adults in the UK believe the Government has failed to give people a clear idea of what the big society is. Our survey suggested that over 30% of voluntary sector CEOs say they are unclear…
“…We believe the Government should articulate a clearer definition of what it is that it is trying to achieve.”
Since joining the HCA, I have become less involved in developing human stories which can demonstrate the positive impact that affordable housing has than I have been in the past.
This is mainly because although we directly fund the delivery of tens of thousands of new homes, they are build and managed by organisations that have the direct links with tenants and first time buyers who benefit from this investment. This leaves us reliant on social landlords and housing providers to uncover those occasional gems needed to bring a standard story to life.