Get the farm business back on track

Get the farm business back on track

Even the best farm businesses get stuck sometimes

Have you ever felt stuck? Maybe it was a time when the tractor had to be pulled out of the mud. Sometimes we don’t even see that coming. Other times we may be aware that we might be getting too close to a place where we’re likely to get stuck.

Being stuck in the mud is never a good feeling. First, there’s the realization that you’re spinning your wheels and can’t get out. And then you know you have to call and tell someone else on the farm what happened.

Having a team to help you may spark a new way of thinking that ultimately leads you out of the mud. (Photo by David Savill/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Most of us have had that experience at one time or another. And most farm leaders have also gotten stuck on their farms at some point, in a different way. That might be getting stuck on which way to go on a major purchasing decision for the farm. Or maybe you feel stuck as you figure out the best way to increase your farm’s revenue.

You know you need to do something, but it can be tough to know which way to go. You might spend a lot of time weighing the pros and cons of different alternatives. It can be very frustrating – and meanwhile, the situation on the farm might not be improving.

Getting unstuck
Even the best farm operators feel this way sometimes. But they’ve figured out ways to get themselves out of the ‘stuck’ place they’re in. Often, that involves hearing perspectives from others, whether that’s peer relationships developed through networking groups, or asking trusted advisors like consultants or lenders.

Sometimes we spin our wheels in the same place for so long that we create a deep groove in that spot. Discovering a different angle from a new idea or thought can give us the different movement we need to start our journey to something new. The first shake or advance out of the mud means we’re on the right path to getting unstuck.

Hearing the perspective of another person who is familiar with the challenges around farming and whose opinion you value can often bring new insights when you feel stuck in a decision or feel that your farm business is ‘stuck’ in some way. You might not necessarily agree 100% with their opinion, but it may spark a new line of thinking that ultimately leads you to the way out.

August opportunity
This summer, you have the opportunity to sit down and work one-on-one with some highly trusted leaders and educators – Dr. David Kohl, Dr. Mike Boehlje, Dr. Danny Klinefelter and Jolene Brown. That will happen over two days at the Water Street PRIME farm business workshop on August 23-25 in Peoria, Ill.

They’ll bring their perspectives to the challenges and opportunities you’re looking at right now in your farm operation. You’ll be able to ask them about what you’ve felt ‘stuck’ on, and get their ideas on what you could do. There will be time to network and build relationships with peer operations. You have just a week left to apply for this workshop. The deadline is July 1.

The opinions of Darren Frye are not necessarily those of Farm Futures or the Penton Farm Progress Group.

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