Mike Sutton is CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas County. Over the last five years, Sutton has leveraged his background to grow Pinellas’ Habitat into the second largest affiliate in the country – constructing 59 new homes last year. Along the way he’s doubled his staff, rejiggered his Board of Directors, and brought life back to Habitat’s annual fundraising events.
We caught up with Sutton to review 2018 and look ahead to 2019.
St. Pete Catalyst: What were Habitat’s biggest accomplishments in 2018?
Sutton: We hit a milestone in 2018 where we completed the 500th Habitat home completed in Pinellas County. We also completed 60 new Habitat homes during 2018.
St. Pete Catalyst: What was a challenge Habitat faced in 2018 and what did you learn from it?
Sutton: We closed one of our retail stores. We learned the importance of not cutting corners and doing proper research when expanding our reach and mission.
St. Pete Catalyst: What are Habitat’s goals in 2019?
Sutton: We plan to serve 100 families over the next 12 months – 60 new homes and 40 home repairs.
St. Pete Catalyst: What do you see for coming for Habitat in 2019?
Sutton: We have a large announcement coming in the first quarter of 2019. Can’t disclose details yet, but will be a good one!
St. Pete Catalyst: What insight (advice or a tip) can you share with readers?
Sutton: Make sure everyone in your “boat” is rowing and not drilling holes when you’re not looking – know your circle!
St. Pete Catalyst: What’s your morning ritual/How do you organize your day?
Sutton: I’m an early riser and arrive to the office before sunrise. It provides me quiet time, an opportunity for reflection, and always me to plan out my day for ultimate success.
St. Pete Catalyst: What are you listening to?
Sutton: I just listened to Dan Pallotta’s “The way we think about charity is dead wrong”, for about the 15th time. Dan talks about how there is a double standard in how we view charities. How much they spend vs. how much they get done.
St. Pete Catalyst: What are you reading?
Sutton: “What Got You here Won’t Get You There” by Marhsall Goldsmith. It was recommended to me by Habitat’s auditor, and focuses on the workplace habits that one needs to break in order to keep advancing their career and accomplishing success.
St. Pete Catalyst: What are you watching?
Sutton: I’m two episodes away from finishing “Homecoming”, the new web series starring Julia Roberts.
St. Pete Catalyst: What is a must-read/watch/listen for our readers?
Sutton: Five Dysfunctions of a Team – this book has been instrumental in the transformation of Habitat Pinellas. Our leadership team continues to grow together to serve more families.