Victory Mission + Ministry provides outreach services, workforce training, and long-term restoration to those in need. Persons can receive a day's worth of food at the food pantry, participate in a Workready Bootcamp, and receive short- or long-term shelter. When they come for basic needs, like shelter, Victory wants to develop relationships to encourage life change and long-term success. Victory believes everyone has a name, a story, and great purpose. The ministry wants those in the restoration program to live in a supportive community with high quality employment. Victory’s mission is: “We share God’s love through intentional relationships for the restoration of a brokenhearted world.”
Change the culture by empowering the staff and teaching them to manage the finances better. Many of the staff had no idea how the organization was funded. The organization also faced pressure in paying off its long-term debt so it could move forward with its strategic goals to make a greater impact in the community.
Inspired by other non-profit success stories in Springfield, MO, such as the work done by Cindy Stein in the government offices of Greene County, MO, as well as what Katie Davis had done at Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks, Jason Hynson, the executive director of Victory Mission + Ministry, with the guidance of one his board members, Rhonda Chapman, turned to The Great Game of Business® (GGOB) to help stabilize the organization’s finances.
GGOB created a path of change for the Victory team. Transparency spread throughout the organization and access to the finances increased collaboration. Victory Mission balanced the operating budget year after year. As a result, Victory has now paid off $990,000 it held in long-term debt and has built up reserves to cover nine months of expenses. “GGOB gave our team a real picture to make decisions and understand Victory’s goals and direction,” says Hynson. “Employees were transformed into the members of a team. GGOB was critical to the Victory Mission turnaround project.”
“As a non-profit organization, people have a tendency to focus only on their service roles, and not think about budgeting. By participating in GGOB, everyone considers how their role affects income and expenses, and ultimately the financial health of our organization. We're all aiming for a common goal and are pulling for one another to succeed.”
~ Wes Bowen, Associate Executive Director of Operations
Spotlight on the Pandemic
Even as the pandemic created chaos, the Victory team remained committed to their mission. While they moved their Huddles to Zoom, they also were forced to make changes—such as working in two shifts to support those in need. In particular, once the local county issued social distancing restrictions, they had 48 hours to move 30 people out of their shelter. “We were fearful that we were going to create homelessness for those people,” says Hynson. But the team rallied together, and after a meeting with the Victory team, successfully moved those 30 individuals to a different Victory facility, placing cots and beds six feet apart as best they could. “We rallied and didn’t have to displace anyone,” says Hynson. “We’re a family that’s learned to solve problems together.”
Victory Mission LOVES Donuts! As a result, many of the MiniGames the team plays involve donuts (and pizza) as rewards. For example, one MiniGame involved supporting new custom coffee labels for the “For Victory, A Coffee Company” social enterprise. Another MiniGame was played to get all staff members to engage and understand the new Employee Handbook.
“The Great Game of Business allows everyone from different departments to come together in unity. The spirit of working together and reminding us that we are all parts to one whole is extremely beneficial. We are able to support each other.”
~ Anna Wallace, Life Together Coordinator/ Community Chaplain
One of Victory Mission’s goals is to continue to develop empowerment tools for its managers. The two biggest areas of the “level up” Hynson is targeting are the budget (annual forecast) to monthly focus (monthly forecast) and the actual amount spent. “This meeting outside of the weekly huddle will be critical to empowerment and growth,” he says. Additionally, Victory plans to increase its tracking ability when it comes to its program Critical Number—stories of incremental change—which is when people make an incrementally positive change in their life. “It’s all about empowering those we serve,” says Hynson.
“It is so nice to hear weekly how other ministries are doing and to know exactly where we are financially. The meetings allow the administration to share relevant information as to vision and ministry plans. Knowing where we stand with our future plans and where we are financially has alleviated a lot of stress about my future. It is so nice to know that our ministry is secure. It allows me to go home at night and not worry.”
~ David Huett, Chaplain