We Are Recruiting For TMO Board Members… Please Join Us NOW!
As fellow residents of the Webber & Quentin estate for 15 and 11 years respectively, and Board members (Umran Malik) for 3 years and Board Chair for the past 17months, and (Sophie Thorpe) more than 4 years and Vice Chair for 4 years, we want to invite you to have a chat with us about potentially joining the Tenant Management Organisation’s Board (TMO).
At the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in September several current members will be stepping down and we are looking to recruit enough new members to ensure we have a full Board of 12 members, ensuring we continue to be well-representative of the estate.
So, why would you consider joining us as a Board member?… Good question and we’ll do our best to answer that for you…
As Board members, what we do for our estate, how we care deeply for you and all our other wonderful neighbours is invaluable, and has made a huge improvement compared to how the Council has managed our estate and our lives in the past. And it’s only getting better and better with the TMO…
But we need your help and we need it now!
For those of you who are tenants, you may remember the painfully long wait times on the phone to report repairs or an emergency, changes to your circumstances or rent problems if you were experiencing difficult times? Yep, we’ve been there!
You may also remember feeling frustrated by the automated phone systems that sent you from one department to another, and which never really answered your questions in the end, and sometimes you’d have to start all over again? Did it take up most of your mornings? It did us!
Do you remember feeling that some Council employees on the other end of the phone repairs line, didn’t really care about your problem, and made you feel like just another number to process? Yes, that was us sometimes!
Or do you remember the really poor quality of repairs that generally needed fixing again only a few months after the Council had already been to ‘service’ the repair you reported? Some of us can put our hands up to this one too!
And what about having to wait a long time for the repair to get done?
And for leaseholders, you may have had a frustrating experience if you had an issue with your property or a neighbour?
Perhaps it took the Council an unreasonable amount of time to address your issue(s), and during that process maybe your property was damaged further by the delays or your quality of life was unreasonably impacted?
I’m sure many of us can think of at least one instance of dealing with the Council that put ourselves, our family and/ or our property at risk due to unprofessional work standards or lack of urgency when addressing our housing or estate problems.
Luckily for us all, we on the Board, and other residents alongside us, have spent the past few years working diligently, along with our staff, to change these bad experiences of dealing with the Council, and we’ve done it by becoming a Tenant Management Organisation.
Right now we are looking for several new Board members to join us, who want to be a part of keeping the TMO alive, who are passionate about doing good for the community, who want to see us all have a safer, more attractive looking place to live, and with homes that are better repaired for the long term and fit to live in…
Because without a TMO, we know that there is no alternative other than to go back to the Councils’ less than satisfactory service, excessive delays, automated phone systems and ineffective repair jobs so many of us have experienced in the past.
And we are closer to that unwanted situation than you realise!
Personally, we don’t want to go back to those dark times when we were under the Council’s control.
We want the TMO to stay! And that’s why we are reaching out to YOU!
With the TMO now in place and with dedicated staff, we are better at…
Listening to you.
Our staff offer a more personalised experience because they can get to know you, know what you need, when you need it for and they are committed to working towards achieving a high standard as quickly as possible. You can speak to them in confidence about issues such as rents, repairs, anti-social behaviour etc. Our staff members have helped support many residents on the estate during challenging times in their lives.
Our Board and subcommittees have sent out a number of community surveys over the past 18 months asking you what YOU want to see improved across your estate. And we are now launching some serious projects in response to your answers. This is the power of the TMO. We ask residents. We listen. We take action by managing the funds we have and by applying for other funding wherever we can. The Fruit & Veg Plots on Webber Row and the Section 106 Green Spaces project for Quentin House are excellent examples.
If you tell us there is an issue with a contractor the TMO is able to address your concerns directly with that contractor in a more efficient time frame. This is because WE hire and manage our contractors, not the Council. And we can change them if we want to, when we want to.
Residents said they wanted better estate security so we have obtained funding for gates to the Webber Row courtyards. We will continue to focus on estate security as we know there are issues with anti-social behaviour, especially in buildings close to Waterloo Road.
Making an impact.
Because a TMO ‘earns’ money from the Council by more efficiently providing some services , we are able to build a surplus of income which then gets put directly back into the community to improve the quality of life on our estate. We choose how these funds are spent. This would not happen if we were still being managed by the Council.
Being a TMO means we are in charge of so much more of our estate than if we were still under the control and management of the Council.
- Our dedicated onsite staff which only TMO’s have
- Our onsite estate office which only TMO’s have
- The quality of repairs
- Monitoring and input into major works
- Staff who know the estate, can note patterns of disrepair, and can help us to manage the fabric of the estate preventatively
- Our green spaces and garden areas
- Support to residents who want to hold social events and activities on the estate
- Continue working with the Council to get our basement hall space back into use (following major flooding)
- And so much more!…
We can, and we want to, continue to improve the services you and all of us use, and the quality of our experience of living on this estate, both in our homes and outside our homes.
Being a Board member helps make all this happen. Without Board members, none of it will continue to happen.
What you need to know
The TMO is a legally registered business with a small number of staff members and an annual budget of approximately £178,000.
Ideally, new Board members will have one or more of the following skills:
List of relevant skills
Administration, Board / committee experience, campaigning, caring for / working with children / change management, organisation governance, conflict resolution, customer service, design, education, events management, facilitating meetings, finance / accounting, fundraising, gardening / landscaping, HR / training, IT / systems, leadership, legal, listening, marketing, medical / first aid, people management, PR / communications, project management, property / repairs / construction, relationship management, team development – there will be others!
Relevant experience can be gained from your education, family life and work life. Training is available (and there is one joint mandatory Board training session yearly).
Board members must be willing to attend the majority of Board meetings which take place every 6 to 8 weeks, with a maximum of 7 to 8 per year. These are currently held ONLINE via zoom so access to a computer is necessary, and on weekdays in the evening.
If you also have a specific interest in either Finance, Human Resources or Communications and wish to join one of these subcommittees, you will need to give more time to attend those meetings as well. But the impact you will have on helping to improve the estate and lives of our residents is worth the time!
Interested future Board Members will nominate themselves (forms are available to do this) and be appointed at the AGM (Annual General Meeting) in September.
So, if you’d like to join us in making a positive impact on this estate and on the lives of all our wonderful residents, including your own, then contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, email and contact number and the best time to contact you, and we will be in touch asap. Please ensure you state in the email that you are interested in becoming a Board Member.
Thank you and we look forward to speaking with you very soon!
Umran Malik – TMO Board Chair
Sophie Thorpe – TMO Board Vice Chair
On behalf of the rest of the Webber & Quentin Tenant Management Organisation Board and organisation