What's on the horizon for your farm in 2015?

Consider farm's goals in the New Year

With the turn of the calendar over to 2015, many are thinking about the brand new year that's in store. News organizations are wrapping up their 'year in review' of 2014 and have been considering what might be key in 2015.

This time of year, it's all about reviewing where we are now, thinking about where we want to be, and creating plans for how we'll get there. There are usually some changes we want to make – whether that's in our lives, or in relationships, or in our farm businesses – to reach our goals.

Change is a tough concept, and even tougher to engage in – but when we focus on the results or the goals that we really want, we find the strength and the resolve to make it happen.

Take the leap

Focusing on the results is very important. Without that focus, we might be hesitant to make a change in the farm operation – even if it's something that really needs to happen to reach a goal we have for the farm. We might stay just as we are, because we hesitate to take a leap toward something better.

It reminds me of something Jolene Brown, our keynote speaker at this year's Water Street Edge farm business seminars, said at the first seminar in Lincoln, Nebraska last month: "If we always do what we've always done, we may find that our farms are out of business."

Jolene was discussing the changes that are happening in Ag, and her message is clear when it comes to leading a farm. As the farm environment changes rapidly, 'what we've always done' isn't necessarily going to get us the results that we want.

It will take a clear plan and strategy to move our farm operations toward what we want them to be. And getting the right strategy in place for the farm often means setting aside some time – with other key leaders in your operation – to develop that plan together.

Then, having a strategy plan in place gives you – and everyone else in your operation – a clear way to get to the farm's biggest goals. That encourages and makes action toward the goals possible.

Set your goals

What goals do you have for your farm operation in 2015? Maybe your goals are tied to an opportunity your operation has – or a challenge it's facing. Take some time this week to consider what you really want for the future of your farm and your family.

To start, you can ask yourself these questions: Where is my operation heading? How will I get there? What resources and people do I need to involve to help make sure we reach our goals?

Here's wishing you, your family and your farm operation a safe, healthy and productive 2015 as you plan your goals for the New Year and work to achieve your vision for your operation!

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

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