There are always two sides to every story, and both sides rarely receive equal consideration when the story is told, most especially the way the story is told.
Such is the case with NewsChannel 5 Investigative Reporter Phil Williams’ relentless pursuit of one of the most efficient agency models in state government, the Tennessee Housing & Development Agency, or THDA for short.
The investigative reporter even suggests their motto “Leading Tennessee Home” should unofficially be the song “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” a humourous twist that got viewers and lawmakers’ attention, but certainly not the true picture of the agency, its employees, and accomplishments.
Former THDA Director Ted Fellman arrived at THDA in November 2005. His leadership transformed the agency from a beaurocratic behemoth to a well-oiled machine. I have been in Real Estate since 2000 and have observed the agency evolve first-hand.
What used to take weeks to process now is accomplished in 24 hours or less. The THDA staff gets the job done rather than “pass the buck” to someone else in another area, which we have all experienced in dealing with government agencies.
THDA employees take their job seriously and enjoy it. You will see them speaking at Rotary Clubs at 7:00 am as well as Realtor and other functions late in the evening. They believe in their organization. They believe in their mission. They produce results.
I know this not only from past experience, but from proudly serving on THDA’s Realtor Advisory Board. The agency is constantly reaching out to the public sector for input and ideas on how their organization can make an even larger difference in the lives of Tennesseans. In THDA offices, you can feel a spirit of cooperation and teamwork among everyone there.
Ted Fellman brought a culture to THDA that produced results. Experts agree that incorporating FUN into the workplace dramatically increases productivity.
CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS http://www.robinthompson.com/makingworkfun.htm
Instead of public ridicule from a TV station, Ted Fellman and the Staff of THDA deserve a sincere THANK YOU for becoming a nationwide model for effective housing finance agencies. If the rest of the country recognizes this, why can’t we? That’s the side of the story that needs to be told.
SEE MORE ABOUT RECENT THDA AWARD HERE http://tn-tennesseehda.civicplus.com/archives/41/NCSHA%20Awards.pdf
Even though THDA does not spend taxpayer dollars and derives its revenue from other sources, Phil Williams did bring attention to the fact that those dollars were public dollars, which is a very valid point.
The public dollars that were spent by THDA on team-building exercises and employee rewards actually increased productivity.
That said, let’s go to Knoxville and investigate the spending habits of the University of Tennessee, where the spending of public dollars has not increased productivity.
One doesn’t have to go far….a severance package of $5 million for a football coach, who knows how much severance for Assistant Coaches, etc. What about the salaries for the replacements? And what do they do for fun?
They will say they are not spending taxpayer dollars, but revenue generated from the “program.”
Just like THDA does, except no one is going to question a thing….ever. Not even Phil.
In response to allegations, THDA Director Ralph Perrey says the agency is only going to spend money on what make sense for its mission and eliminate anything questionable that lawmakers would not understand.
It would be much easier to eliminate what they do understand. Enough said.
Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019 direct 615.593.6340. Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Gallatin, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.