Today in Third Sector magazine, the Tory Shadow Charities Minister Nick Hurd lays into Futurebuilders for...shock...a 16% management overhead.
Now, I am not sure where he has worked before - I think it was for a bank - but I am not sure Nick has a lot of idea of what it takes for charities to be effective. This sort of political dog-whistling is just what we don't need. My overheads are around 16% and I'm happy to say so. Ask most CEOs and they will tell you the same. OK, I am pushing mine down to 14% to stay competitive but 16% isn't unusual.
This focus on our overheads is very fucking tiring, to be honest. As Martin Brookes from New Philanthripy Capital recently said, we need to be much less fixated with costs and a lot more interested in outcomes. If this is as clever as the Tories re going to get about our sector I would actually rather deal with another five years of the newly humanised Gordon Brown.
I like Nick Hurd as a bloke. He is fresh, human and bright. These sort of attacks don't do him or the Tories any favours. If he wants to call time on initiatives like Futurebuilders, I would respect him a lot more if he just came out and said it rather than engage in this kind of showboating.